For Homestyle Desserts, Historic Honor Takes the Cake

State Sen. Pete Harckham with Laura Timmons of Homestyle Desserts.  (Photo: Office of State Sen. Pete Harckham/Tom Staudter)

New York State Senator Pete Harckham recently honored Homestyle Desserts, a multi-generational family bakery on South Water Street in Peekskill, as a New York State Historic Business, an official designation reserved for businesses that have been in operation for at least 50 years and contributed to their community’s history.    

Rose Sanca, the founder of Homestyle Desserts, first started her bakery business in 1969, focusing on her legendary apple dumplings. Located originally in Buchanan and known as Dutch Mill Donuts, Sanca changed the name of the business in 1984 when she moved to its present location in Peekskill. In 2015, Sanca retired and passed the business on to her two children, Laura Timmons and Jason Elias. In 2018, the business expanded to a second storefront in Cold Spring. 

Today, Homestyle Desserts offers gluten-free and vegan baked goods, as well as a wide range of specialty items. (Homestyle created the cake for New York Yankees star Derek Jeter’s retirement party.)  

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“Homestyle Desserts has been a central part of our family for more than two generations, and my brother and I are happy to preserve the traditional aspects of the bakery, while staying up-to-date and trying new things,” said Timmons. “We appreciate the recognition that Senator Harckham has presented to us, knowing how valued we are by our customers.” 

New York State’s Historic Business Preservation Registry was established in 2020 to commemorate the local businesses across the state that have helped to shape the history, heritage and identity of the communities they serve.  

Nominations to the registry must be sponsored by an elected state official. Each elected official may nominate two businesses per term. Anyone interested in having a business added to the registry should reach out to their state representative.

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