Appetizers

Freeport Bakery’s controversial Ken doll cakes get a new fall look

Freeport Bakery’s new Ken doll cake features a buttercream-frosting gown shaped like a cornucopia – a horn of plenty – with its open front spilling out fall’s bountiful harvest.
Freeport Bakery’s new Ken doll cake features a buttercream-frosting gown shaped like a cornucopia – a horn of plenty – with its open front spilling out fall’s bountiful harvest. Anita Chabria

The Barbie doll may be an international icon, but it’s her buff blond boyfriend Ken who got the social media buzz in August.

That’s when Freeport Bakery owner Marlene Goetzeler posted to her Facebook account a photo of a custom-made cake featuring a Ken doll wearing a tiara and a pink strapless Cinderella-style ball gown.

The photo attracted a barrage of social media posts criticizing the bakery for promoting transgenderism and more, though Goetzeler never said a word about her Ken’s sexuality. In response, thousands of supporters flooded Facebook with posts from as far away as New Zealand and Pakistan.

“I just thought it was a pretty cake,” Goetzeler told The Bee at the time. “I didn’t think of the political repercussions. I wasn’t trying to make a stand.” Though the bakery has made many same-sex marriage cakes and Ken cakes in the past, it was the first time Goetzeler had posted a photo of one.

Since the uproar, the bakery has created a different Ken cake in the same vein each week, while continuing to sell its “More Cake, Less Hate” T-shirts for $24. Of that, $5 is donated to Sierra Forever Families, an adoption agency for orphaned lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youths.

“We’ve been doing one for display every week,” said Ann Mueller, the bakery’s operations manager. “We change it up according to what season it is or whether there’s a special event going on. We had an Oktoberfest one, and we had a mummy last week for Halloween. We’re just having fun with it. Ken has become our weekly mascot.”

The new cake features Ken wearing a gown shaped like a cornucopia – a horn of plenty – with its open front spilling out fall’s bountiful harvest. A same-themed headdress completes the ensemble. The labor-intensive creations are hand-made with buttermilk-flavored cake and buttercream frosting. The cost ranges from $50 to $125, and “we get at least several orders a week,” Mueller said.

“We have so many people in the community who are thrilled over what we’ve done and what we’re representing,” Mueller said. “We really appreciate it.”

Freeport Bakery is located at 2966 Freeport Blvd., Sacramento.

Allen Pierleoni: 916-321-1128, @apierleonisacbe

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