KNWA Today: Movers & Shakers, Rick Boone, Owner of Rick’s Bakery

Movers and Shakers

He’s the man behind one of most successful, locally owned-small businesses in the area. Rick Boone started as this culinary novice, turned donuts into dollars.
If you ask Boone, he’s a no guts, no glory type guy. “I’m the guy that will jump out of an airplane and halfway down say, ‘Did I remember to put that parachute on?’ says Boone.

But sometimes, life is what you bake it. Boone says, “This business chose me, I didn’t choose it, because it’s not something I dreamed about or ever really thought about.”

Such is the case for Boone, owner of Rick’s Bakery. Growing up in Rogers, Boone’s business acumen took shape as youngster.  “I started my own mowing business at 11 and then by 12 I had the neighborhood kids and contracted them out to upstart mowing yards, so it was just kind of fun to me.” says Boone.

And Boone’s pedigree for business, wasn’t a coincidence. His father always inspired to be a business owner, but it never panned out. But there was one attribute the elder Boone passed down. Boone says, “My dad was actually a baker in the Army in the Korean War. A General had came by and ate some things that he made and though it was great and so he took him and made him the personal chef of the war.”

Boone enrolled at the University of Arkansas in the early 70’s, with dreams of being a future engineer for NASAS. After college, unsure on where life would take him next, he met an associate who wanted to start a donut shop. “Where we started the bakery, he owned that complex. It was originally an old donut shop in the 60’s called, Spudnuts. And he said, ‘You know what we should do, we should open a donut shop there.’ And I said, ‘Sure, why not!'”

But after six months, his colleague bought him out, leaving Boone as the sole owner. But soon, he got help from a new partner, his wife, Sharon. “I got married the day before we opened… we would go in every night together and make the donuts and she would start waiting on customers, then I would finish making the donuts and vice versa.”

But dough, went flat. Boone says, “I didn’t have any money to buy the ingredients for the next day, so we would package all of the donuts and I would put them in my car and I would go peddling door-to-door selling donuts, until I had enough money to buy the ingredients for the next morning.”

That ambition, was the driving force to the success of Rick’s Bakery, 38 years later. “I’m not a quitter and that’s just part of my makeup.” Something his father instilled in him, many years before. “He passed away about 5 years ago, but he was so proud and so excited about what we did.” says Boone.

There’s no sugarcoating it…somethings in life, can’t be rushed. For Rick Boone, his story of sweet success, was well-done. “Everyday we have our hiccups. We’re human. We’re trying new things all the time. But it’s fun and that’s why I keep doing it.” says Boone.

In August, after a second attempt, Rick’s Bakery opened its second location Rogers at 4600 W. Rozell St. And in 2020, the bakery will celebrate 40 years as a Northwest Arkansas institution.
 

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