During one summer visit, pink gummy sharks swam atop birthday cake cupcakes in honor of Shark Week in a case of confections at Cupcake Wishes. The bakery marked one year of being open in its Avon location this past July. 

Situated at the corner of Detroit Road and state Route 611 in the heart of the French Creek district, Cupcake Wishes is the whimsical creation of Holly Kennedy, who opened the renovated space to grow her burgeoning baking business.

“I had been doing it out of my home for three years, and it was just insane,” says the vivacious Kennedy, a self-taught baker who uses all her own recipes. “I just couldn’t keep up. I was starting at 6 a.m. on a Friday and ending around 3 a.m. Saturday, going to bed and getting up at 8 a.m. to go deliver everything. Finally, I said this is not working.”

She found the space around Christmas Eve 2012 and signed a lease on New Year’s Day 2013. The former office location was gutted and transformed into a chic, white space frosted in pink cupcake décor. Her kitchen is small — only 200 square feet because she sacrificed a large section to create a play area for her 5-year-old son, Rocco.

“It’s been a whirlwind ever since,” says the former stay-at-home mom who has built her clientele solely through word of mouth. Her shop now offers innovative flavors, designs and displays to complement weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, showers, a good report card or just because.

Top sellers include the salted caramel (French vanilla cupcake filled with salted caramel, frosted with salted caramel buttercream, drizzled with caramel and topped with a salted caramel chip), peanut butter cup (chocolate cupcake with peanut butter chips baked inside, frosted with peanut butter buttercream and topped with half a Reese’s cup) and cookie dough (a French vanilla cupcake filled with cookie dough, topped with a brown sugar buttercream and dipped in mini chocolate chips). 

Kennedy sets her shop apart by specializing in cupcakes. She has created cupcake bouquets fashioned after flowers, using foam and bamboo skewers. She also offers a Giant Cupcake that feeds six to eight people and often is used as cutting cake for weddings. Jumbo cupcakes are available for pre-order. 

“We try to do things fun and different but still working smart,” says Kennedy, who fills her cupcake case with 12 to 18 flavors every Saturday. “Cupcakes have always been my thing. Like everybody brings potato salad to the picnic; I bring cupcakes.”

Cupcake Wishes is located at 37000 Detroit Road. It is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., or until the cupcake case is sold out.

Try It

Here are four of the uniquely sweet offerings from Cupcake Wishes, which has more than 60 flavor combos in its recipe book. 

The Godfather: A French vanilla cupcake stuffed with cannoli filling (ricotta, powdered sugar and chocolate chips) topped with freshly made chocolate ganache, a dollop of almond cream and a sprinkle of nuts.

Spumoni: Fashioned after its Italian ice cream namesake, this cupcake starts with a cherry cake that is topped with a pistachio-and-chocolate-swirled frosting and a fresh cherry. 

Bacon Bomb: This chocolate cupcake is baked with chopped bacon and topped with peanut butter buttercream, Heath pieces and crisp bacon.

Loaded Sweet Potato: This fall favorite is a spiced sweet potato cupcake filled with caramel and topped with a whipped cinnamon frosting and mini marshmallows.