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Mackenzies Bakery in Vicksburg expected to open in spring 2022

A visual representation of what Mackenzies plans to look like when construction is finished.{ }(WWMT/Courtesy of Craig Clark)
A visual representation of what Mackenzies plans to look like when construction is finished. (WWMT/Courtesy of Craig Clark)
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The new owners of Mackenzies Bakery announced plans to open in the spring of 2022.

Originally from Kalamazoo under the name MacKenzie's Bakery, Mackenzies plans to bring the aroma of fresh-baked bread 12 miles south to their new location in downtown Vicksburg at 103 E. Prairie St.

Construction workers from Frederick Construction have started renovations to the new 1,700 square foot space that includes merging two adjoined buildings.

Other planned renovations include a production kitchen and a retail storefront.

The location is anticipated to focus on wholesale bread in addition to selling to local retailers and restaurants.

However, the new location also plans to include a customer-facing bakery where visitors can grab fresh-baked breads like Pretzel, Struan, Crispy Italian and Paesano blends with the goal of contributing to Vicksburg's charm.

When the MacKenzie's Bakery brand went for sale, Chris Moore, Vicksburg native who owns The Mill at Vicksburg, jumped at the opportunity to revitalize the brand after growing up enjoying their baked goods.

The new team has worked to renew recipes, establish sales channels, determine price points and prepare to distribute products throughout the region.

“My hope is that a visit to Mackenzies Bakery will kindle memories from childhood, with eyes locked on the tempting goodies behind the case, while creating generations worth of new memories for residents and visitors to enjoy an elevated retail experience in my thriving hometown,” said Moore. “I’m excited to bring this memory-making experience to downtown Vicksburg.”

Moore talked with former owner John MacKenzie for consultation and hired Jill Younger and Cris Najar who were two long-time previous MacKenzie's employees.

“We’re very excited to bring Mackenzies bread into stores and dining establishments across Southwest Michigan,” said Jackie Koney, Chief Operating Officer of Paper City Development, Moore’s Vicksburg-based company. “Cris and Jill are hard at work preparing to offer large-scale bread production for wholesale.”

Younger started working at MacKenzie's Bakery in 2000 at the retail counter and is expected to be the new production manager.

“My goals are very clear—to deliver on our brand promise to provide an elevated retail experience featuring high-quality, artisanal baked goods in an inviting space,” said Younger. “Whether people interact with our brand in person, online or in a store, they’ll enjoy great service and delicious baked goods that will keep them coming back for more.”

Najar was a baker that incorporated art into pasty-making. He started his career in the culinary industry by working at restaurants in Chicago, is home town, before he switched to baking.

Najar is expected to be the head baker at Mackenzies.

“I am thrilled to return to the kitchen and continue the tradition of creating MacKenzie’s bread and treats,” said Najar. “I can’t wait to engage with patrons and share our high-quality, seasonal offerings in an environment that will rival major culinary venues!”

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“I couldn’t be happier with seeing the MacKenzie’s brand live on the way it will in Vicksburg,” said MacKenzie. “Chris Moore and his team are absolutely committed to doing things in top-notch fashion, so I can’t wait to see what the next iteration does for the region.”

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