New pop-ups offer the “best of” the region

BALTIMORE – Two new operators, Stupid Delicious! Desserts and Finesse Lyfestyle, are now part of the LaunchPad program at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI Marshall). Now in its second year, the program gives startups and small business owners a unique opportunity to participate in the airport’s dynamic retail program. It also offers an exciting way for travelers to support small businesses and experience the “best of” Baltimore and Washington when they shop at the airport.

“The LaunchPad program was intended to create opportunities for small and start-up retail businesses. Our first year was a great success, and we couldn’t be happier to bring more operators to this program,” says Brett Kelly, vice president of Fraport Maryland, developer and manager of the retail program at BWI Marshall Airport.

Tanya Davis, the founder of Stupid Delicious! Desserts, is known as “The Cookie Lady” in Baltimore. This third-generation baker brings her love for baking and original cookie recipes to her LaunchPad pop-up. She also cranks out cupcakes, pies and homemade ice cream at her shop on Harford Road. "I learned from the professional dessert makers in my family how to create a memorable pie and ice cream, but it was the cookies, developed in Fell's Point, that generated the most buzz - and they travel well.”

Finesse Lyfestyle owners Aqueelah and Artiium Arbyummi of Waldorf, Maryland, wanted to do more than open a shop filled with their favorite natural products, they have a higher calling: to be the change they wish to see in the world. “We are known as ‘The Healing Brand’ because we heal the skin with our products by going back to basics, making certified organic products,” said Mr. Arbyummi.

The new LaunchPad pop-up operators receive 12-month leases as well as training, sales and marketing support. They join two existing LaunchPad operators that have extended their leases at BWI Marshall: New Secrets Tea and Fashion Spa House.

“It’s inspiring to see small businesses take off at the airport,” added Ricky Smith, Executive Director of BWI Marshall Airport. “The LaunchPad program gives startups and small business owners an opportunity to not only share their products and services, but also their unique stories with a wider audience of airport travelers. We’re excited to continue this program and bring more retail options to BWI Marshall passengers.”