Donuts have long been among the food offerings at the St. Joseph County Grange Fair, but they were missing from the lineup the last couple of years. However, that deficiency – something that was noted by fairgoers – has been addressed this year with the recruitment of one of the fair’s newest vendors, The Donut Family.
The family-owned and operated business – from White Bear Lake, Minnesota – is operating its ‘mini-donut’ concession on Exhibit Lane, across from barns 23 and 24.
The business, which will mark 40 years next year, is owned by Todd and Denelle Hawkins who worked with Denelle’s parents until their retirement in 1995 or 1996. The business starts locally in June and is on the road doing fairs and festivals from July through mid-October.
Staffing the unit in Centreville this week are Ted and Nancy Boecher and Tim and Celeste Terbilcox. Celeste is the sister of Todd Hawkins.
During a Thursday afternoon meeting with reporters, Nancy Boecher said the machine they use to make the mini-donuts was built in 1946 and is “really unique.” (Nancy_Boecher_audio clip – :40)
The Donut Family sells mini-donuts by the bag – 22 for $5 or 16 for $4 – and they’ve been offering a variety of specials and doing some sampling this week as part of the process to introduce themselves as a new vendor at the fair.
They open up at 7 a.m. and – in addition to the mini-donuts – serve coffee, hot and cold cappuccino, fresh-squeezed lemonade, smoothies and apple cider.
Celeste Terbilcox said, “It’s a fun business. I enjoy it.” And Jim Barnes, vice-president of the Fair Board, said, “From hearing the comments on the grounds, the mini-donuts have been very well received.”