Oct 21, 2013 • By

One sweet day in Motown

National Sweetest Day, on Saturday, Oct. 19, took on a whole new meaning in Detroit when Betty Crocker descended on the city that rocks with thousands of free cupcakes and goodwill for the local community and nonprofits.

As part of the national roll-out of its new line of baking mixes and frostings, Betty Crocker created a one-of-a-kind event, dubbed #Sweetroit.

The signature act of the day-long event took place at Detroit’s popular open-air Eastern Market. The market event showcased three prominent Detroit charities that aligned with one of three new cupcake flavors.

The Coalition for Temporary Shelter (COTS), Focus: Hope and Gleaners, each received $5,000 for participating.


Throughout the event, visitors at the market had the chance to sample the cupcakes and vote for their favorite flavor and nonprofit pairing to earn an extra $5,000.

However, the Betty Crocker team surprised the crowd by donating an extra $5,000 to all of the nonprofits at the end of the event.

The nonprofits appeared on Detroit’s WDIV-TV prior to the event, encouraging the community to vote for their cause by participating in Sweetroit.

COTS provides shelter for a large number of Detroit’s 19,000 homeless individuals and families.

Focus:HOPE is a nationally recognized civil and human rights organization that boasts education and job training programs and a food program that assists 42,000 low-income mothers, children and senior citizens with nutritiously-balanced food each month.

Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan (Gleaners) is one of the city’s longest-running food banks responsible for doling out more than 46 million pounds of emergency food to over 550 partner schools, soup kitchens, shelters and pantries across southeast Michigan.

“This was truly an amazing gift that Betty Crocker provided these groups to further the important community service they do,” said Shaunteel Jenkins, Detroit City Council president. “We are very fortunate to have these nonprofits working to make our community stronger, so the generous gift from Betty Crocker will go a long way to fulfill their important missions.”

Jenkins honored Betty Crocker with an Award of Recognition on behalf of the city of Detroit, nodding to its contributions of improving the way-of-life for citizens throughout the metro.

Jenkins was one of many Detroit VIPs who participated in Sweetroit activities. Detroit Tigers legend Willie Horton, Detroit Pistons great James Edwards, Miss Michigan and local media personalities championed the nonprofits and interacted with the crowd.


Detroit Piston great, James Edwards, poses with a #Sweetroit visitor.

Families rocked out to live music, posed at a social photo booth and enjoyed face painters, balloon artists and a magical act.


And the sweetness didn’t stop there.

Following the Eastern Market event, the team headed to the Detroit Zoo for its annual Zoo Boo event to distribute more cupcakes and good cheer.


The brand decided to celebrate Sweetest Day in a city that not only celebrates the occasion, but was deserving of a little extra love given the tough economic conditions the area has experienced over the last several years.


“Hopefully we left the city a little sweeter, and for a few nonprofits, a boost that we hope will continue to benefit the greater Detroit area,” said Kim Francis, marketing manager for Betty Crocker. “It was an honor to represent our brand in an environment where we knew our contributions were really going to make a deep impact.”

By the end of the day, more than 15,000 cupcakes were devoured and $30,000 was provided to fuel community service efforts.