• Baker fills void on Jacksonville's northside, inspires others in community

    By: Beth Rousseau , Action News Jax


    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Ladreeka Atwater, known as the "Cupcake Lady", said she has been serving up the Northside’s most well-known baked goods at her shop on Norwood Avenue shop for 17 years.

    On Friday, she told Action News Jax she began baking to pay for senior expenses at Raines High School.

    “I started selling cupcakes. I would sell out by second period," Atwater said. "I did that for my 11th and 12th grade years."


    The single mom said she got back to baking when her son needed money for a field trip to Washington, D.C.

    She turned an injury during her job at the post office into an opportunity.

    “A single mom quit her job, a good job. So I quit my job. Obviously (it worked out), because 17 years later I’m full time,” she explained.

    Over the years, she expanded her business.

    In May, she opened Majestic Event Complex which fills a much-needed void in her community.

    STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories

    Download WJAX Apps

    "I created a nice space, very elegant, where we can have nice things on the Northside. There is a need here because we don’t have that many,” she said.

    Atwater didn’t imagine herself as a debt-free business owner when she was struggling to make ends meet in high school.

    PHOTOS: Baker fills void on Jacksonville's northside, inspires others in community

    She said her goal is to set an example for young people in the community.

    The "Cupcake Lady" added, “Just work hard. You don’t have to have the perfect background. You don’t have to be super educated. You just have to be determined.”

    Next Up: