By Lonnie Huhman,
Fat Tuesday, better known as Paczki Day in Michigan, is always a busy and fun one at the Dexter Bakery.
In preparation for the busy morning rush that comes for the once-a-year treat, the bakery opened an hour earlier than the normal Tuesday time of 6 a.m. The display cases, trays and to-go boxes were filled with chocolate, custard, blueberry, prune, and lemon, apple, strawberry, cream and raspberry paczkis.
Bridgette Tasker, a manager at the bakery, said they had customers waiting out in the parking lot at 4:40 a.m. She said the bakery, which is owned by Karen Dudek, began baking on Sunday and worked 12-15 hour shifts that day and on Monday to turn out 1,280 dozen, which in total are 15,360 paczkis.
“A lot of hard work goes into today,” Tasker said around 2 p.m. that afternoon. “It was a busy morning and we had a lot of regular customers plus a lot of new ones come in.”
Around 2 p.m. the bakery had six dozen left.
The bakery had its full staff on hand as well as some extra help lending a hand. Tasker said it’s a non-stop morning, but it is filled with a lot of good moments.
The day also included the radio station, W4 Country “Breakfast With Bubba” broadcasting live.
“I think it went well this year,” said Tasker, who marked her seventh paczki day this year.
In working to keep the day moving along well and their customers satisfied, she said there are times of nervousness, but overall it’s a fun day because of the uniqueness of having all-hands on deck with everyone that works at the bakery coming together.
“We did a good job and got it done,” Tasker said.
The demand was high this year because the bakery basically sold out before closing time.
Everyone has their favorite.
For Tasker, it’s chocolate, and for me, it’s raspberry, and after a delicious bite I can say that the Dexter Bakery makes an incredibly good paczki.