Teen-run delivery service provides bagels, lox and fresh produce to community members while giving back to workers on the front lines.
In early January, tragedy struck the local bagel scene when The Bagel Factory Cafe closed their Birmingham location.
Three Birmingham teens decided then to create a delivery service to help satisfy the bagel cravings of those throughout the surrounding area. Thus began Bagel Boys Delivery Service.
Temple Israel members Ethan Marcus, 16, and his brother Mason, 13, started the company with their friend Jonathan Cloutier, 16, by partnering with The Bagel Factory’s location in Southfield to bring bagels to those who used to go to the Birmingham location. The Bagel Factory located in Southfield is strictly for ordering takeout.
Previously, the location in Southfield, The Bagel Factory Cafe in Troy and the location formally in Birmingham were all under the same management. The management then decided to sell the Troy and Birmingham location before the Birmingham store closed.
The location in Troy and Birmingham have ‘cafe’ added to the end simply because they offer seating for those who would like to sit and enjoy their bagel.
The boys began by fulfilling orders for some of their family members to ensure that they were up for the task. After the trial run was complete, they built their own website, created order forms and were open for business.
Now, faced with the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic impacting businesses around the area, the boys pushed forward with their business to make sure that members of the community who wanted bagels could still support a local business without leaving their homes.
“On every delivery, we wear gloves. We don’t wear masks on the delivery, only when we enter the bagel factory, simply because we don’t come in contact with people when we make a delivery,” Ethan said. “We text them to let them know that their order has been delivered.”
Their business has experienced exponential growth. They started off with just 6 customers but continued to watch their delivery numbers increase. They wound up with 260 deliveries to make on Sunday, May 10: Mother’s Day, the ultimate bagel-brunch holiday.
The Bagel Boys currently make delivers to Birmingham, Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms, Franklin, Bloomfield Township, Bloomfield Hills, West Bloomfield, Farmington Hills and Royal Oak.
Orders can be placed through their website and must be complete before Saturday at 1 p.m. so they can ensure delivery on Sunday. If the order is placed after the cutoff time, the delivery will simply take place the following Sunday.
Customers have a choice from over 28 different bagel flavors and a multitude of different types and sizes of cream cheese. The boys now also offer sliced nova lox from Acme Smoked Fish and customers can also have either a fruit box or veggie box delivered from Leonardo’s Produce in Detroit.
“Our goal as a company right now is to help limit the amount of people who need to go to the stores right now,” Jonathan said. “We want to help give them the food they need without having to leave the house so often.”
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the boys decided to donate 10% of their portions to Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak. They have also delivered hundreds of bagels to the staff at the hospital, courtesy of members of the community who placed those orders.
“Once the COVID pandemic started, we wanted to give back to our community who was fighting on the front lines,” Jonathan said. “We just sent them a donation of $1,130.37 and approximately four weeks ago we made a donation of $209.”
While it may be cheesy, there is no denying that the Bagel Boys Delivery Service has been a hole-in-one for the local community and to those working on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you or someone you know would like to purchase an order of bagels, you can head to their website for more information.