Uprising Bakery & Cafe in Lake in the Hills, which closed Saturday after its front windows were smashed and epithets written on the walls, re-opened Sunday and Monday to long lines and community enthusiasm.
The cafe had planned an all-ages drag show Saturday night but had experienced backlash over the previous few weeks. The cafe and the performers were committed to putting on the show, right up until their hands were forced by the overnight destruction.
On Monday morning, cafe owner Corinna Bendel-Sac released a video message on Facebook thanking the community and the Lake in the Hills police for assistance and support over the weekend.
Several Lake in the Hills village trustees and the village president, Ray Bogdanowski, also stopped by Sunday to show support for the business, Bendel-Sac said.
“Coming in today after a fresh night’s sleep and seeing our cases empty after selling everything yesterday in support of us means a lot,” Bendel-Sac said. “This was very scary and traumatic, but my employees – my servers, my chef, my cousin – they still chose to come in the day after the attack and sit with me at the cafe and doubled down on everything. They are wonderful.”
Offering more details on the clean-up and aftermath on Saturday, Bendel-Sac said members of her family, who have been through a lot personally over the past few weeks, came out to assist as well, with her mother washing dishes and her husband propping open the door to the prep room, which is now heavy with plywood panels over the damaged panes.
“It meant a lot to hear my kids say they are proud of me,” Bendel-Sac said. “I appreciate and love you all.”
Bendel-Sac also thanked the myriad online supporters who have sent messages over the past few weeks, calling them “warriors for love.”
Customers who showed up since Sunday have been writing messages of support on social media and on the wooden boards covering the broken windows at the cafe.
“I could not believe the line out the door this morning,” Lake in the Hills resident Stacy French said on Facebook. “That was awesome to see! So proud of you guys.”
Another poster, Adrianne Fernandez, noted that she “waited in line for over an hour for baked goods” but “would do it again if asked. The love and support we saw out there today was beautiful.”
At the moment, due to the vandalism and the overwhelming patronage on Sunday, the cafe was temporarily out of stock for many items, Bendel-Sac said.
A GoFundMe created by community members for the bakery’s behalf has raised over $11,000 as of Monday afternoon.
Woodstock Pride has been in contact with the cafe offering help, and Buffalo Grove Pride and Together We Stand McHenry County provided “generous” donations Sunday, Bendel-Sac said.
Lake in the Hills Police made an arrest in the case on Saturday. The suspect, Joseph Collins, 23, of Alsip, charged with a hate crime and criminal damage to property, is due in court on Tuesday.