A Henderson bakery was tapped to compete on Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars” just weeks after it opened.
Showboy Bakeshop opened in March, a joint venture between two friends who met through a love of show business and found their shared interests extended to baking.
Stephen Lowry was an entertainer and Jared Sullivan did stage management. The two met when Lowry moved from London to Las Vegas to pursue a career in entertainment. They found themselves bringing more than just your run-of-the-mill apple pie to parties.
“We’d bring dishes to Thanksgiving and Christmas parties,” Lowry said. “It just started rolling from there. People would say, ‘I want that thing you brought to this party.’”
When it got to the point that the duo was taking a few orders a week for cakes, Lowry and Sullivan decided to take the dive and open Showboy Bakeshop at 2591 Anthem Village Dr., Henderson.
And it was only about a month after their March opening that they were contacted by Food Network representatives about competing on “Cupcake Wars.”
“When I got the email, I literally just stared at it for 10 minutes,” Lowry said. “It’s a show I’ve always thought at some point I’d love to be on. I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, this is happening.’”
The episode was filmed in June, leaving Lowry and Sullivan with a secret they were dying to share with their customers, who packed the shop in the days after the announcement wanting to know what had happened.
“Cupcake Wars” was the “hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” Lowry said. A huge fan of the show, he could be critical of contestants’ mistakes — until he saw how easy it was to make a blunder.
“Once it starts, everything goes out the window,” he said. “All of a sudden I just forgot how to do everything because I could see the clock ticking down.”
Showboy Bakeshop competed for the $10,000 prize against another first-time contestant and two bakeries that had been on the show previously. The theme, “The Wizard of Oz,” was chosen to celebrate the re-release of the movie. Legendary film critic Leonard Maltin served as the guest judge. The show will air at 8 p.m. Saturday.
Regardless of the results, Lowry is convinced Showboy Bakeshop has the best customers in Las Vegas. He said it’s their support that has made Showboy’s success possible.
“This is what we wanted to do. To see it come alive, it’s like a dream come true,” he said. “This is what we’re good at — we’re good at baking and making people happy through cupcakes and cakes.”