New baking club emerges on UIS Campus

Group shares knowledge and techniques while baking for fundraisers and events

New baking club emerges on UIS Campus

John Kurecki, Features Writer

Given the ease with which a new student organization can be founded, UIS has seen some vibrantly colorful and unique clubs. Joining this pantheon of offbeat groups is the Baking Club, which is entering its second year as an organization.

Junior Michelle Haberstroh, who is currently the club’s president, founded the club last year. According to Haberstroh, “I help plan what we will be baking at our meeting and the events that we will have. This is our second year as an organization, and we are still trying to come up with new fun ideas.”

Clearly, the club is devoted to the art of baking. Haberstroh described the general meeting schedule, saying, “We offer knowledge on proper baking techniques and also how to make recipes your own. During our meeting we usually bake two different items and everyone gets to taste them.”

The club will also be using these meetings to bake the stock for their cupcake-eating competition next month. The club will host the “Cupcake Challenge” on the West Quad at 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 7.

According to Haberstroh, “[The Baking Club] coordinated with Phi Kappa Tau to fundraise for breast cancer awareness. We plan on fundraising for a similar cause in the spring semester…I really enjoyed baking for breast cancer awareness as well as selling our treats at the event.” Both organizations received commendations on social media from the university for their efforts at the event.

While the notion of a baking club may seem odd, there has been somewhat of a phenomenon surrounding the concept. As an example, in 2012 writer Sharon Parsons wrote on the website of the British publication Daily Mail, “Forget book clubs, it’s cake clubs that are on the rise. [Fueled] by the likes of The Great British Bake Off, which saw some four million viewers tuning in every week, our passion for home baking continues to grow unabated.”

The British movement has even aided in the development of a worldwide baking club, the Clandestine Cake Club. This Britain-based organization has 196 child clubs around the world, including six in the United States, the closest of which is in St. Louis.

The club has competitions, message boards, a recipe repository, and a host of postings from the interconnected clubs around the world sharing their experiences.

Haberstroh wishes to extend a similar experience to UIS students, and encourages all students interested in baking to contact her at [email protected] and attend one of their open meetings.