Savages Bakery's Darryl Blythe and Wayne Thomson are handing over their rolling pins to new owners, bringing to an end 35 years of 1am starts.
The pair have been co-owners of the business since 1995.
Blythe said he first began baking after he left school at age 15 and his parents insisted that he find employment.
"My first job was at Cobblestone Pies in Palmerston North," Blythe said.
"Then I started an apprenticeship with Brotherston's here in Whanganui, which was an outstanding caterers and bakery back in the 70s. After that I opened a little shop on Guyton St called the Alpine Home Cookery, before it was bought out by Bell's Cake Kitchen on Victoria Ave."
After a stint at Bell's, Blythe said he began laying flooring vinyl with his brother, before "popping into Savages" on what turned out to be a fateful smoko break.
"They said they were looking for a baker and asked if I wanted a job. I went out the back and talked to Ray [Savage], and he said I could start next week.
"I've been here ever since."
Thomson said that after he left school he went "door-knocking" to find employment, with Savages eventually taking him on.
"This is the only job I've ever had," Thomson said.
"My CV is going to look pretty poor when I go door-knocking for another job, she'll be pretty light."
Blythe said Ray Savage's father Les had started the bakery in the 1960s, under the name Quality Cake Kitchen.
"I worked for Ray, and a few months after that Wayne came on board and did his apprenticeship with us. I was in partnership with Ray for three years and then I bought him out. One day Wayne just came along and expressed interest in being a partner in the business.
"Things were getting pretty hectic by then, so it was good to have someone to help lessen the load."
All three of his sons had worked at Savages at one time or another, Thomson said, as had Blythe's three children.
"They've all played their parts, whether it be bacon and egg duty or scraping trays after school. Our parents have worked for us too, so it's been a real family affair.
"Oddly enough, none of them wanted to take over the business, I don't know why."
Thomson said his wife Rebecca died 18 years ago, when their children were all under five years old.
"After that, Darryl and I somehow managed to sort out a 'week on - week off' kind of setup, and it's continued since then. Before that we were working up to 70 hours a week.
"Maybe that's why our partnership has worked so well, because we never have to work with each other or see each other.
"We both have the same work ethic though. We're on the same page, and we both have the same goals."
Savages now has three locations, two in Whanganui East and one on Saint John's Hill, as well as two busy delivery vans.
The bakery's menu had expanded over the years, Blythe said, but classics such as doughnuts and mince and cheese pies remained their most popular items.
"We've been really blessed. There were a few nervous moments during Covid-19, but as soon as we got back to level 3, people were lining up outside.
"The amount of people who have supported us has just been fantastic."
Savages would be taken over by local couple Tim and Sally Gillespie in December.
"Tim worked for us for around 12 years, before he went away for a while," Thompson said.
"He did always tell us that he'd come back and buy this place, and low and behold, that's exactly what's happened."
After handing over the reins, Blythe said he would be working casually with his stepson Jordan Cawley, who operates Cawley Construction.
As for Thomson, he said he hadn't thought too much about what his next step would be.
"I'm definitely going to have a couple of months off over summer and get used to some sleep-ins. I think we're both looking forward to not spending another summer in here, because it really cranks up.
"I'll still have that built-in alarm in my noggin, but I'll work through that I'm sure."