Ode to a Donut Shop - Goodbye Jolly Pirate

Oh who am I kidding! I am no poet but I did have a few feelings about my local Jolly Pirate closing its doors. This Grove City landmark is a favorite not just for me but for many in the community. This place has been around for many years though I don't know the exact number. However the owner, who I found out today is Art, is retiring and they will be closing the doors at 10pm on Saturday January 14th. The rumor is the doors will remain closed until they find someone to buy and operate it again. I saw a facebook post that mentioned they plan on leaving the recipes for whoever comes next. So there is hope but this will be the ending chapter for many of the wonderful people who have kept this place running for so long. 

I decided to go to Jolly Pirate as I know it today for the last time and thought I would take you with me...

Upon entering there of course was a line, after all these are the best donuts ever hands down! Everyone wanted one last bite!

This photo does not represent the full racks of countless tasty donuts that was normally available on a regular day at Jolly Pirate. However when word gets out that you are shutting your doors its hard to keep up with the demand of a whole community of fans at your door step round the clock!

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Here is the man himself, Art! I never met him before but he allowed me to take his photo and one by one regulars would come in and say hello to him and the others who work there. 

I always really liked the uniforms the employees wore! How fun are the treasure chest boxes? 

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This little lady named Grace was dressed for the occasion and enjoying every bite of her Jelly donut! Grace and her mom Emily were one of the many enjoying their last treat at Jolly Pirate.

A baker named Emmanuel was in high spirits for such a sad day and though busily baking I enjoyed a fun encounter with him! He noticed me snapping some photos and made silly faces; cracked me up! A little while later he comes back and has a camera of his own snapping back at me! He was such a character! This sweet jovial man also gifted me with a fresh jelly donut on my way out the door. 

This is Carla. She has been working at the Pirate since she was 15 years old! It was a hard day for her no doubt. Not only was the line out the door keeping them busy but she also had to say goodbye to her regular crowd. I witnessed tears, warm hugs, and kind words. She mentioned she could write a book filled with stories of this place. Carla was always the one who served me my usual; What I like to call the "perfect trio" which consisted of 1 devils food, 1 vanilla cream, and 1 honey dip (or french crueler). I know 3 donuts! Don't judge!

I feel terrible that I forgot this nice man's name (I want to say it was Bill or Bob) but he sat next to me at the bar while I enjoyed my donut and he drank his coffee. We swapped stories and he mentioned about going when the Jolly Pirate was in a location down a few doors at the now Dominoes. I told him about how my late Grandpa took me on bike rides to go pick up donuts for the family when he was in town and how the ladies who worked there would give us kids a sprinkled covered donut hole when we visited.

Look at his mischievous grin!

Love the smell of fresh baked donuts!

From: Emmanuel

Happy Retirement Art! Im sure you deserve a rest! Thank you to you and all your staff for providing us truly amazing service and the best donuts anywhere! You have been a sweet part of many of my families breakfasts, church meetings, and a sweet treat during a crappy week! You will be missed!

How about you? Do you have any memories that include Jolly Pirate? What's your vote - Jolly Pirate Best Donuts in town or ever? Let me know in the comments below! Also feel free to share this post to show your love for our Grove City Jolly Pirate!