Cookies for a cause

MATTHEWS – When the Schoeck sisters hosted a yard sale to help a local woman in need in 2009, the girls had no idea their charitable efforts would evolve into something else – an annual bake sale.

The Schoeck sisters are used to putting their baking skills to good use to help people in their community. They’ll do it again on Friday.

The Schoeck sisters are used to putting their baking skills to good use to help people in their community. They’ll do it again on Friday.

The three sisters decided to organize a yard sale four years ago to help a single mom who needed floors for her home. After the sale’s success, they decided to host a bake sale, as well, bringing in about $1,600 to help the woman pay for hardwood floors.

The pull of helping others became irresistible, and the girls decided to make the bake sale an annual endeavor – helping families and individuals facing hardships like a severe car accident, unemployment or a sick child.

“It was so successful, we thought we would keep doing it,” said 14-year-old Laura Schoeck, who spearheads the sale each year, along with her sisters Susanna and Anna, ages 12 and 16.

The sisters will host their fifth annual bake sale on Friday, Oct. 11, from 2 to 6 p.m. off Elizabeth Lane in Matthews, near Elizabeth Lane Elementary School. The sale will feature a variety of baked goods, including cinnamon bread, red velvet cookies, cupcakes, fudge, gluten-free goods and even snow cones and homemade dog treats. Proceeds from the sale will benefit Watts, a local 14-month-old boy diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

When the sisters heard about Watts’s diagnosis, they knew they wanted to help.

“When I heard about all this, I was kind of filled with grief for this family and couldn’t even imagine what they would be going through with this young one,” Laura said.

The girls have been promoting the sale through flyers in their neighborhood, emails to friends and family members and announcements at their church, Christ Covenant. Friends and community members have agreed to bake items for the sale, and the girls also will receive donations from Daphne’s Bakery, Bread Basket and Nova’s Bakery.

“It’s crazy how you tell people about your cause, and they find a way to help,” Laura said.

The girls typically start organizing the sale right after Labor Day. They start baking some of their own items the evening before the sale and bake the quicker, easier items, such as cookies, on the morning of the sale.

Laura’s looking forward to baking. She’s always enjoyed making cookies and other baked goods and views the annual bake sale as something exciting – not as a chore.

“I’m the biggest baker (of) the three girls,” she said. “I like to stay active; I like staying busy.”

The girls also grow closer to each other during the bake sale, Laura said, making new memories each year.

“I honestly think it’s a time we can all come together for a common cause and all have the same goal,” she said. “It’s a fun time that brings memories … When people come together, they can really make a difference.”

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