Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

D-Day fundraiser turning doughnuts to dollars

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DREW Dodds wants to set you up with a Krispy Kreme doughnut so badly he's willing to drive to Fargo and back to do it.

A local military historian, Dodds is hoping to sell a minimum of 6,000 dozen of Krispy Kreme's finest as part of a unique fundraising effort. His ultimate goal is to fly one Second World War veteran and one widow to Normandy, France, to mark the 60th anniversary of D-Day next summer.

He started dropping off flyers at Winnipeg businesses last week, offering a dozen glazed doughnuts for $6.99 on minimum orders of 14 dozen.

His offer has prompted lip-licking curiosity because there are no Winnipeg outlets for the plump -- and calorie crammed -- delicacies that have attained cult status in parts of the United States and Canada.

He said he's already received firm orders of more than 300 dozen, which he expects to pick up in the middle of the night late next week for early-morning delivery.

He said his goal is to raise a minimum of $12,000 and he's willing to make the jaunt to North Dakota every three to four weeks over the coming months in order to reach it.

"We'll bring the doughnuts back by truck. A Suburban can hold 500 dozen. We'll deliver them to offices and worksites," he said in an interview yesterday.

Dodds said the widow is a family friend whose husband was killed at Normandy and a local veteran will be chosen for the Normandy pilgrimage by picking a name out of a hat.

Dodds said Krispy Kreme is giving him a special fundraising price for what he calls "Operation Overlord" -- the military name for the invasion of Normandy -- allowing him to make a $2 profit plus 50 cents to cover transportation costs from each dozen.

Greg Leipsic, general manager of Horizon Leipsic Insurance, was so intrigued by the flyer that he sent out an e-mail to friends and fellow workers and received orders for 50 dozen doughnuts in one afternoon.

"I thought it was timely with Remembrance Day next week. It's a nice thing for people to raise money towards," he said.

"I'm going to run around town to visit our clients and drop off doughnuts. People who have had (Krispy Kremes) before will be elated. People who haven't, well, if you like doughnuts, you'll love these," he said.

Debbie Baasch, manager of Fargo's only Krispy Kreme location, said they provide discounted doughnuts to charitable organizations virtually every day.

"We've had people drive from the Montana border (to Fargo) to raise money for good causes. We like to help, whether it's for kids' groups or churches," she said in an interview.

She said all she asks is that people give her an approximate order a week in advance and a firm one four days beforehand so they can factor it into their 72,000-doughnut-per-day (that's 6,000 dozen) production schedule.

She said Krispy Kreme sells only its glazed doughnuts for fundraising purposes at $3.25 US per dozen for orders of less than 100 dozen and $3 US per dozen for larger orders.

"Our glazed doughnut is our most popular. This way there's no mix-ups," she said, noting fundraisers set the final selling price.

Krispy Kreme doesn't have any outlets in Winnipeg but a company spokesperson told the Free Press this spring it plans to open between 65 and 75 locations across the country in the coming years. It has 275 stores across North America, including Ontario and Quebec, making an estimated 7.5 million doughnuts per day.

Krispy Kreme, founded in 1937 in Winston-Salem, N.C., now has more than 290 outlets producing 7.5 million doughnuts daily.

Anybody with a Krispy Kreme craving can call Dodds at 998-4273.

geoff.kirbyson@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 7, 2003 $sourceSection$sourcePage

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