L to R: Eden, Meryl and Justin Masterson

Meryl (Ham attended ‘04-‘06) Masterson had no idea as a college student at Bethel that she would eventually start and run her own business.

But you might say the beginnings of her business started right here on campus.

Meryl is currently the owner of Meryl Masterson’s Home Plate Cookies where she bakes a variety of cookies, like her husband’s favorite Batter-up Butterscotch Oatmeal. It’s also one of her top sellers.

If you visit her website, which is designed in baseball décor, you’ll also find other baseball cookie names like Fastball Sugar Cookie and Home Run Chocolate Chip. The cookie and business names are appropriate because her husband is Cleveland Indians major league pitcher Justin Masterson (attended ’03-’05) and her first “clientele” were Bethel baseball players.

All this cookie baking started back in college, and at that time, the two were just dating.

“Justin was in my perspectives of fine arts class at Bethel. I saw him in class and I just had this feeling that I was going to marry him some day,” says the former elementary education major.

Meryl remembers baking chocolate chip cookies in the dorm room with Justin’s sister, Mandy Masterson (’05), for the Bethel baseball team. Little did Meryl know that someday she would be baking cookies for minor and major league baseball players all over the country.

Meryl tells a story about how her cookies became nationally known. They were staying with a host family in Maine and Justin was a double A with the Red Sox.

“The host dad, Tom, loved how I baked cookies all the time, and knew I baked them for the AA Portland Sea Dogs each game! So when Justin got called up to the Red Sox to make his debut (in 2008), Tom told me I had to bake some for the Red Sox team and also for their TV announcers. I did not want to do this as I figured the Boston Red Sox had MUCH better cookies and tons of them. I thought, ‘Why would they want my cookies?!’ But Tom insisted and said it’d be a huge hit. Well, they were! The TV announcers talked ALL about the cookies the ENTIRE game, and still do every time we play the Red Sox! (I still send up a goodie bag of cookies for them every time we play them!) Fans and people all over wanted to know how to order the cookies!”

So the business began. Meryl started taking online business classes, registered as an LLC and designed a website. Her kitchen became official in 2009.

While cookie baking is a business for Meryl, it’s also a mini-ministry. She says she actually loves giving cookies to people, more than getting orders.

“I hope to make people smile and love on them, but also it really is a good way for me to pass the time with Justin being on the road a lot. Until we had a baby girl in January, it really was just something to keep me busy! Now I am super busy but enjoy every minute of it! And our little girl will one day be helping me or at least eating cookie dough!”

To place you order for fresh baked cookies from Meryl Masterson’s Home Plate Cookies, visit www.merylscookies.com.

Watch a video on Meryl’s sweet treats here.