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We’re in the Donut Business!

Well, we went and did it.

With time and work slipping by, we decided to move forward with the fair/festival concession business. We found a lil orbits automatic mini donut machine for sale for a good price in Atlanta and, once again, over extended ourselves to make the leap of faith to try something completely different.

Donut Machine

We ‘pretty much’ bought a turnkey package from a family that bought a machine in the spring of this year for their son to make money for college. He ran the machine all summer and made enough money for college but his parents have full time jobs and can’t run the business when he’s away so their selling the whole setup.

We are re-doing the signage and having to buy some odds and ends. With luck, we’ll end up spending about another $500 to get a start.

There’s nothing like trial by fire!

Anxious to get started (and anxious start making some money), I booked us into the Shady Days in Gay arts and crafts festival this coming weekend in Gay, Georgia. It runs from Saturday the 3rd of October from 9am to 6pm and Sunday the 4th from 9am to 5pm. The organizer was excited to have us join the festival even at this late date. She has seen our machine before and was excited to add it to the show. This festival they expect 7,000 people over the 2 days. I’m competing against 7 other food vendors but directly against two funnel cake operators.

The organizer was excited about the donut machine because she thought it would offer an option for morning food that she was missing. I added coffee to our menu (duh, coffee and donuts!) to address that need.

We plan on offering a dozen mini donuts for between $3 and $4 with the option of plain, cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar, or chocolate toppings at no extra charge. It’s an affordable finger food for families with children. The festival mandates that we buy all soft drinks through them and the prices are fixed at $2 per drink. This includes bottled water.

Another positive aspect of this new weekend endeavor, I can continue the handyman, light remodeling during the week as things come up to add to the kitty. If and/or when the movie gig appears, we’ll stash the donut equipment until the movie is complete and then restart where we left off.

Mid December we head out west to Arizona. We’ll spend the holiday with family getting Hil and both babies comfortable before I head south to Mexico to clean up the boat for their arrival.

Our hope is that come May, we can pull out the mini-donut equipment, dust it off, and start making money at fairs and festivals for the next 6 months.

In my dream, the angel shrugged and said, “If we fail this time, it will be a failure of imagination.” And then she placed the world gently in the palm of my hand.

-Eric Jong

You know an ICE COLD draft beer in Mexico is a very affordable price of approximately $1.25! Click Here to Buy Us a Beer.

3 comments to We’re in the Donut Business!

  • devon

    hey, how do you like your donut business? Im really serious about getting started on one, just need info and a push. I love the mini orbits donuts! are you finding it easy to do and make a little money? any tips? thanks!!

  • big cheese

    Hi Devon-

    I like the machine and it’s the only way I can run the booth alone. You won’t get rich selling mini-donuts and the machine needs constant attention to make good donuts. Every third day it takes about 3 hours to clean the machine thoroughly. For me, the machine is a good choice. The hardest part is finding decent shows with a market for the donuts. The regionality of mini-donuts is interesting. In Utah and southern Arizona the donuts were unheard of when we did shows in those areas. Currently, we are barely making our minimum average daily sales numbers to get by. It’s far from lucrative but enough for us this season to work on it again for next season.

  • Johan

    Hello, I am ready to take the jump (just need that little push) into getting a machine and starting my own business. How was business this past year?. Your last post was more than one year ago and I would love to hear about your experience. Thanks and good luck!. :)