Business Columns & Blogs

Bits of Business | New job a piece of cake

A local woman recently opened a cake-making business.

Carrie Williams, however, took a few detours before she realized her dream.

About 15 years before she opened Serendipity’s Cakes of Distinction in Pleasant Gap her family convinced her to become a teacher, a job she soon realized wasn’t for her. She went into real estate for 14 years, but she always wanted to do what she loved — make cakes.

“I wanted to be a cake decorator, and everyone said, ‘no, no, no,’ ” Williams said. “Back then it wasn’t a reputable career and there weren’t people on TV doing it. They talked me into doing something else I didn’t have a passion for.”

Williams’ bakery, at 114 E. College Ave., is a one-person operation by appointment only, which can be made by calling 574-3242.

Williams said her cakes are wheat, gluten and nut free.

“My mother had developed issues years ago, so we experimented with recipes for her, and I found out more people had allergy problems,” Williams said. “I wanted to do something more special, different and meaningful than the average bakery.”

Veterans to be served

Texas Roadhouse will give a Texas-sized thank you to veterans this week.

The restaurant, with a location on Waddle Road in Patton Township, is inviting veterans and active U.S. service members for a free lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Veterans Day.

If you’re a service member elsewhere in the country, Texas Roadhouse is giving away free lunches at each of its locations.

Service members who provide proof of service in the form a VA card or discharge papers can choose from one of 10 entrees, such as a 6-ounce sirloin, two sides and a nonalcoholic beverage. The free lunch offer does not include free meal offers for family members or friends.

Applebee’s will also offer veterans and active-duty military a free meal on Tuesday. Customers will be asked to provide proof of service.

The offer is valid for dine-in only and features a special menu, including traditional sides.

The restaurant has a location on Colonnade Way in Patton Township.

Penn State to host weeklong business event

Starting a small business has never been harder.

Learning the first steps you have to take might never be easier.

The 7th annual Penn State Global Entrepreneurship Week will kick off Nov. 16 and runs through Nov. 20. There will be 70 events throughout the week, 68 of which are open to the public.

GEW, an international event in more than 150 countries, promotes people to explore their potential as self-starters and innovators and to connect people with potential collaborators, mentors and investors. Events range from small networking gatherings to large competitions.

“We’d love everyone, students and community members, to come,” GEW coordinator Linda Feltman said. “We expanded it last year and more people came, so it was a benchmark year for us. We hope that continues with more events and people this year.”

The event drew more than 3,000 students and community members last year for 45 events.

“I’m really hoping we have more community members out,” Feltman said. “If they look at the schedule, they’ll see a lot of opportunities that they’ll probably be interested in.”

For more information, go to