Several parking spaces in downtown Greensboro are painted with one sweet word in all capital letters, “CHEESECAKES.” The parking lot is just off South Elm Street, next to the patio of Cheesecakes by Alex. Inside the small store, tables and a glowing fish tank adorn one side; the kitchen and glass cases full of cakes line the other. Here, customers file in as early as 7:30 a.m. and as late as 11 p.m. on the weekends for a view of the different cheesecakes — also macaroons, bagels, muffins, and sticky buns — while smells of coffee, caramel, and cinnamon fill the space. A customer orders a build-your-own-cheesecake — which is 12 slices of whatever you want — and starts by selecting a slice each of crème brûlée and bananas foster cheesecakes. Meanwhile, Alex Amoroso, who has lived in Greensboro most of his life, has the young staff laughing again. He’s the big personality and baker behind the treats, and he’s known for his endless new recipes and promotions. “I’m looking for beta testers for this idea I have for a bake-at-home crumb cake,” he says to a group of customers. “Any takers?”
To commemorate our 90th anniversary, we’ve compiled a time line that highlights the stories, contributors, and themes that have shaped this magazine — and your view of the Old North State — using nine decades of our own words.