Rian Nelson

Rian Nelson opened Big Sky Bakery & Coffeehouse in Sidney on Feb. 10, 2020.

California born and now 10-year Sidney resident Rian Nelson opened Big Sky Bakery & Coffeehouse on Feb. 10, 2020.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected a lot of businesses around the state and one of the effects it had on the business is the seating arraignments.

“I think the biggest thing that it took away is my seating area,” she said. “There are a lot of coffee shops in town and I think my seating area was kind of the thing that made me stand out because there is nowhere else in town that you can go to get a coffee and sit down with a group of friends or read the paper. I would say that was probably the most difficult thing with the pandemic is that people couldn’t sit anymore.”

Fortunately for Nelson and the business, Big Sky Bakery & Coffeehouse has managed to stay open through the ongoing pandemic.

“We stayed open because you could walk in, get your coffee and you had to leave,” she said. “There were a couple of days where when this first started that we closed for like two days and I just thought to myself I have no idea what I’m supposed to do. Thankfully, for the most part, we were able to stay open.

We started delivering as well.”

The bakery offers a lot of baked goods and coffee, but Nelson does have a particular favorite.

“My favorite thing on the menu is the Caramel Rolls,” she said. “The Caramel and cinnamon rolls are probably everybody’s favorite thing because they’re huge. I sell out about almost every single one. Everybody loves those things.”

Owning a bakery/coffeehouse wasn’t necessarily always her plan, but now that it has come to fruition, she certainly can thank her grandma for that.

“It’s always been something that was in my family. Over holidays, my grandma and I, who is still in California and hands down a way better baker than I am, would always bake together. I grew up having always baked and it has just been something I have held near and dear to my heart and that is being able just to bake together with my grandma.”

Nelson couldn’t be happier with her time in Sidney and being in this community and she knows that while this pandemic has caused difficulties, she believes in the Sidney community that we will get through this.

“Sidney always shows up for its people. We’re such a small community and we have so many Mom and Pop shops. If you don’t own one or somebody in your family doesn’t own one, you’re probably good friends with somebody who does.

“I think they were all really good about sticking around and showing as much support as they can. Now that everything is beginning to open up, I’m seeing a lot of the same people, and I can’t express how much I appreciate the community because they’re so ready to help everyone. Even other businesses who call in for coffee or who get baked goods, people were ready and so willing to help such a new business at the time.”

Big Sky Bakery & Coffeehouse is open from Tuesday–Friday between 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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