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Icing Smiles connects bakers to critically ill children to create memorable cakes

Buttercream Ball on March 7
Posted at 5:00 PM, Mar 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-02 17:50:25-05

TIMONIUM, Md. — At Cake by Jason Hisley, if you can imagine it, Jason Hisley and his team of bakers can make it into a cake.

And every now and then, Hisley is called on to make a very special cake for a child who needs a serious pick-me-up.

"To me, Icing Smiles is just such a unique organization that really caters not only to the kids but their families," he said.

Hisley is one of more than 11,000 volunteer bakers, or Sugar Angels as they're called, who are part of the Icing Smiles network. The non-profit connects bakers across the country to children who are critically ill. They also make cakes for the siblings of children who are dealing with life-threatening diseases.

Chelsea Boog is also a Sugar Angel and joined the organization in 2013.

"It helps the child to be a normal child for a minute and take away everything that they’re going through," she said.

About four years ago, Boog went from Sugar Angel to Angel Mom. Icing Smiles made Boog a memorial cake on what would have been her son Vincent's first birthday. Vincent died at 10 weeks old from a heart defect.

"It’s been a really special thing to understand Icing Smiles from both side of it. I was involved with it before I even knew I would ever be a recipient. and it brings me that much more joy now giving a cake to someone and understanding how special it truly means to them," Boog said.

Six months ago, Boog welcomed another little angel into her life, baby Makenzie.

"It’s important to me that she’s incorporated into all of this and grows up seeing the good in the world and the things we can do as part of carrying on her brother’s legacy."

Last year, Boog won the Showpiece Showdown, a cake-decorating competition, at the Buttercream Ball. She will be participating in the ball again this year by making the hero cake for the fundraiser.

Icing Smiles founder Tracy Quisenberry says the ball is a great way for people to see first-hand the amount of work that goes into the cakes to ensure that every child, no matter what they're going through, can enjoy one moment of absolute bliss.

"In general our mission is not easy, it’s difficult," said Quisenberry. "But when you see the joy that it brings to these families and know that you’re providing them with an escape that is so needed, a sense of normalcy and memories during a difficult time, it brings joy."

The Buttercream Ball is Saturday March 7 at Laurel Park from 7-11 p.m. Tickets will be on sale until the day of the event. WMAR-2 News' Megan Knight and Dave Detling will be competing in a live Nailed It! cake-decorating competition. To purchase a ticket, click here.