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Donut-Eating Contest Is Paradise Ace-In-The-Hole

Bill Parker of Paradise Donuts in Sanatoga

Bill Parker of Paradise Donuts in Sanatoga

SANATOGA PA – For the grand opening of his new Paradise Donuts franchise at 2170 E. High St., shop owner Bill Parker couldn’t resist an iconic pairing of cops and donuts. He wanted to make the launch memorable, though, so he’s taking that image a step further.

The Saturday (Nov. 21, 2015) Paradise ribbon-cutting celebration at 10 a.m. is scheduled to include an eating contest between Lower Pottsgrove police and Sanatoga firefighters. Whichever team scarfs down the greatest number of donut “midgets” within 1 minute brings home the championship title.

The winners’ trophy, if any, might be battered, fried and sugar-coated as well.

Before betting on either team, though, be aware both have done more than their share of sampling of Paradise goods. The Sanatoga Fire Company is a less-than-2-minutes walk from its front door; for the police, a 3-minute drive. Competitors on both sides have patronized the shop plenty of times since late August, when it “unofficially” began business.

The public is welcome to watch the fun, and Parker promises he won’t mind if guests buy a dozen or two of his treats to mark the occasion. There are other events too: kids can have their faces painted, Pottsgrove High School cheerleaders will make an appearance, and maybe even Parker himself will join in to sing a special rendition of the song “Lollypop, Lollypop,” re-christened as “Donut Shop, Donut Shop.”

Then again, he could be better off just sticking to donut-making.

He’s been doing that for sometime now, Parker said recently, having participated in extensive training with Paradise franchise personnel and other shop owners. Perfecting donut-making skills isn’t easy, he admitted, particularly because the Paradise method is to create them by hand, not by machine.

“The process requires much more time,” Parker explained, which is why East High Street drivers who pass the shop before dawn’s early light likely will see his kitchen lights blazing in back.

The products, in an assortment of flavors, shapes and varieties, are made fresh daily. Expect to find basic icings like chocolate and strawberry coupled with more exotic tastes like Maple Bacon or Chocolate-Iced Peanut Butter Banana. Need toppings with that? They can include just about anything: coconut, peanut butter cups, crushed cookies, popular breakfast cereals, bacon and nuts.

Parker said he sources the accompanying coffee and fresh milk sold in the shop from local suppliers too.

Parker is a Lower Pottsgrove resident who in the past has chaired the Pottstown-Pottsgrove Youth Aid Panel, volunteered in the Goodwill Fire Company, and most recently was elected to the Pottsgrove Board of School Directors.

In the future, Paradise intends to schedule Donut and Movie Nights on Fridays. Parents can drop off their children by reservation only, “and enjoy a couple of hours to themselves,” Parker said. And he’s already enjoyed modest success in expanding Paradise catering to businesses, schools and churches.

Paradise is open Sundays through Saturdays from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. (and occasionally a little later, Parker noted), but is closed Mondays. Apparently, even donut makers need a break.

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