The Amish Community Market and Bakery at 368 Thorndike Road in Unity, shown Friday, has reopened after fire destroyed the store in January. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

UNITY — An Amish market in Unity is drawing swarms of customers after reopening following a fire in January that destroyed the building.

John Yoder, the new owner of the popular Amish Community Market and Bakery at 368 Thorndike Road, described the reopening as “simply awesome.”

With the charred remains of the fire a distant memory, the new front porch — lined with handmade wooden chairs, produce and pots of mums — creates an autumn-in-Maine scene that invites customers to come inside the market.

Sue Reynolds, who lives in Etna, said the new building looks “fantastic.” She said she used to make weekly visits to the market, and was anxiously awaiting its reopening. She was there Friday to stock up on her favorite items.

One item that was missing: The market’s famous doughnuts. They should be back later this week, after a vent hood is installed over the fryer, said Yoder, who assumed ownership of the market from Caleb Stoll during the rebuild.

The market is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day, except Thursdays and Sundays. It is a mix of a hardware center, grocery store and bakery, with loads of goods made by the surrounding Amish community or otherwise made in Maine. But if you want to make a purchase, leave your credit card at home. The store only accepts cash or checks.


Laurie and Brian Yacino were at the market for the first time Friday and, impressed by the low prices, picked up a variety of items. They live in Mount Vernon and were in the area for the Common Ground Country Fair when they decided to stop at the store. An aunt had told them about the market last year, but they did not have a chance to visit before the fire.

Yoder said efforts were made to maintain the general appearance of the store, but the porch in front is a little wider, the bakery in back a little bigger and the inside has a new layout for shoppers.

Customers can peek into the bakery to see the hustle and bustle as workers produce a variety of goods.

Aaron Fisher, behind counter, assists customers Friday at the Amish Community Market and Bakery in Unity. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Throughout the store, the offerings range from practical to whimsical. There are axes, tools, boots, baking supplies and spices. There are also locally made sweet treats: Pies, breads, cookies and fudge in flavors ranging from raspberry to maple nut.

The fire last winter quickly engulfed the building, with heavy smoke that could be seen for miles, leaving employees unable to do anything but watch.

It did not take long for the Amish community to begin cleanup and rebuilding efforts, and the broader community showed support, too, with many people donating money to help build a new market and bakery.


Photographs of the January fire that destroyed the Amish Community Market and Bakery are on display Friday at the rebuilt market at 368 Thorndike Road in Unity. The Amish community worked to rebuild the market, which reopened last week. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Although the Office of State Fire Marshal investigated the blaze, it was not able to determine the cause. The fire began near the boiler, Yoder said, so it is thought the equipment might have malfunctioned and ignited the flames.

The new building includes several changes made in the interest of fire prevention. The boiler was moved outside, fire resistant insulation was used and the Styrofoam has been covered, instead of leaving it exposed like at the old building.

Standing in the new space Friday, Yoder expressed his appreciation for those who contributed to the rebuild.

“I would definitely want to thank just the town, the community for their interest and help and donations especially,” he said.

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