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Elk Grove Citizen

Bayles Happy Helping Elk Grove

Apr 25, 2024 09:53AM ● By Emanuel Espinoza
ELK GROVE, CA (MPG) - For more than three decades, Ray Bayles, 83, has been quite a beloved asset to the Elk Grove community.
Owner of Designs by Ray, a store in Elk Grove, Bayles has done plenty of volunteer work for local organizations. He produced the Strauss Festival for 36 years and also performed and worked on event costuming. Bayles has also volunteered for Soroptimist International of Elk Grove events and the Elk Grove Food Bank.
Bayles opened his business in 1986 and specializes in floral arrangements for funerals and weddings. 
The business has been in three locations, including the current location in Old Town Elk Grove and a previous location on Bond Road.
Bayles is humble about his community service.
“I do donations for people who have supported me and my business, as well as support schools and scholarships for students,” Bayles said. “It’s just part of owning a business.”
But Maria Spann, who moved here from Vallejo to Elk Grove in 2021, said that Bayles’ support to the community is outstanding. Spann met Bayles through a Soroptimist International of Elk Grove Christmas fundraiser when he “was kind enough” to let her set up a See’s Candy holiday fundraiser at Bayles’ shop.
“We hit it off immediately,” Spann said. “It was like I had known him for 20 years and I had only known him for about six months. He is a very good resource for somebody like me who is new to this community. He is just one of those people that when you meet him, you like him immediately.”
Spann said that Elk Grove organizations with fundraising events looking for gift and money donations often turn to Bayles for support.
“He has always been very generous with what he has in his shop, always willing to help and support different organizations and come to their functions,” Spann said. He’s a very good supporter of what goes on in this community and is a very giving man."
Mary Gahart, another Elk Grove resident and Spann’s, said that she also met Bayles at the See’s Candy fundraiser for the Elk Grove Soroptimists. 
“He has a really good eye on how he designs the shop and he keeps it current with each season,” Gahart said. “He is very creative in that way and his stuff is always changing. He is a very humble, humble man.”
Bayles said that he is happy to help the Elk Grove community.
“I love being a part of the Elk Grove community. My daughter grew up here; my grandkids are growing up here,” Bayles said. “I’m always here to help out the community whenever I can.”