Sweet news for Camden

North Camden’s first new bakery in half a century is set to open at 9th and Pearl streets on Valentine’s Day.

A project of Respond, Inc., the retail operation will feature fresh bread and other baked goods -- including sugar-free selections -- prepared by graduates of the human services agency’s Culinary Arts Training Program.

Featured items will include an utterly fabulous confection (take my word for it) known as the “Camden Cookie.”

“The bakery is special, something different, and the community is really excited,” Respond executive director Wilbert Mitchell says. The for-profit business will create a dozen jobs.

The bakery and coffee shop is located in a former barber shop that was renovated with about $30,000, some of which was provided by the city’s Empowerment Zone program. The new business will be open daily except Monday;  the ribbon-cutting is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday.