Someone You Should Know: Vermillion’s cake lady

Monica Iverson is this week's Someone You Should Know
Published: Oct. 27, 2022 at 7:59 AM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Monica Iverson is well known in Vermillion.

“I’m the cake lady. I’ve been the cake lady for years,” said Monica.

For the past 27 years, Monica has been baking and designing cakes.

“When my children were young, that’s kind of when it started. I started making cakes for kids own party. And I had friend who came to the party, and then called me and said your son’s cake was great. Can you make me one?”

So Cakes by Monica, began.

“Lot of wedding cakes. At one time we were doing probably several hundred a year. Sometime, I was doing five, or six, a weekend,” said Monica.

She recently designed a cake for a university event for former Coyote Chris Nilsen, who won a silver medal in the Olympics.

“I made a big cake with an actual torch on the top, like an Olympic torch. And I figured out a way to make it light up, and spin,” said Monica.

Iverson makes the cakes out of two Vermillion restaurants she co-owns. Cafe Brule and Dakota Brickhouse. And the former french professor at USD has won awards for her cakes.

“I went to the Mall of America big Midwest Bakery Association. And you had to apply. And there were only 13 of us that were accepted, out of the four surrounding states. And we won first place a couple of years in a row, for my team that I put together. You had to do a five tier wedding cake in three hours. It was stressful. Just like on the baking shows,” said Monica.

“She’s one of the top decorators in the Midwest, that’s for certain. She’s won multiple competitions. She has a fiery personality. She’s very particular, we like to call it passionate,” said restaurant co-owner Jim Waters.

“The art part of it honestly. I feel like I am an artist at heart, even though my mother said I’d never make any money doing that. So I went into teaching, but I love that as well. Just making people happy and smile,”

Which is what she’ll continue to do.

“For me it’s all about going back to the cakes. Like if things are really crazy busy, and then it slows down, and I go need to make a cake. That’s my zen time. I just kind of get into a zone, and I get to decorate. I love that time. I honestly think I’ll be a little old grandma writing happy birthday or something on a cake,” said Monica.