Mr. Happy's Bakery, Bar & Grill

The Baking Mechanic

125 E. Main St. Cortez, CO 81321

970-565-9869 | Visit Website

Dave Chisholm was a mechanic for 30 years. He earned the nickname, “The Baking Mechanic”, because of his favorite hobby, baking. “I started baking as a kid and have always loved cooking and baking,” he explained.

“When I turned 50, I wanted to open a bakery.” He named it Mr. Happy’s, his nickname since he was 17. His family called him the “Ultimate Optimist”, and he owned a jeep that he would enter in competitions with a big smiley face on the side that was also named Mr. Happy.

Dave opened the bakery in late 2009 in a leased building in Cortez. In 2011, a building that he wanted to buy was in foreclosure. To get a loan to buy the building, he had to get an SBA loan. He was referred to the Southwest state director, who “spent hours and hours” helping him write a business plan. The two completed the proposal for the SBA loan that was submitted to Colorado Lending Source.

Southwest state director helped with the financials and projections and the loan was approved. Dave explained
“I’d owned two other businesses that I ran by the seat of my pants. I’d never done a business plan. I had to be completely educated about the whole process and the SBDC helped with everything.”
They renovated the building and opened the bakery, bar and restaurant. Every day, they bake fresh pastries, Danish, and bread products. “Every hamburger bun is baked fresh here every morning. I never planned to have a bar and restaurant with live music, but it just evolved that way.”

Mr. Happy’s now has 16 full-time employees. Dave is really proud of what he has created and loves the social aspects of the business and interacting with his customers

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