Donut miss it! Saturday festival in Marion celebrates sweet treats

MIKE CONLEY/MCDOWELL NEWS

Robert Masiello of Mr. Bob’s Do-Nuts holds a plate of his tasty creations. The second Carolina Donut Festival is this Saturday and will be bigger than the first one and include a half marathon between Old Fort and Marion.

Western North Carolina’s sweetest festival comes back to Marion this Saturday.

The Second Carolina Doughnut Festival takes place in two blocks of downtown Marion.

The festival will kick off with Bob to Bob’s Half Marathon at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday at Mr. Bob’s Do-Nuts No. 2 in Old Fort. The runners will continue all the way to Mr. Bob’s in downtown Marion. This is a point to point course and is capped at 200 runners. A free shuttle service will take the half marathon participants from the Marion Tailgate Market to the start line in Old Fort.

The Carolina Donut Dash 5K race will start at the Tailgate Market and take participants throughout downtown Marion and also end at the Carolina Donut Festival.

Participants from both races will receive a Mr. Bob’s Donut at the finish line, a finisher medal, and race T-shirt. There will be awards for the top three overall winners for female and male in both races as well as award medals for the top three in each age group for both female and male. Age groups will be in five-year increments. Timing will be provided by Event Mercenaries of Black Mountain, according to a news release.

The festival itself will actually get started at 10 a.m. Saturday.

At the courthouse, you will see the Miss Carolina Donut Festival Pageant. There will be 10 winners in the pageant.

The Glaze of Glory doughnut eating contest will be back too. Representatives from the Marion Police Department, McDowell County Sheriff’s Office and the N.C. Highway Patrol will again see who can finish off the most doughnuts.

There will be contests for children and adults too.

Inflatables will be set up in the downtown for kids to bounce around and work off their extra energy.

The festival will feature five doughnut vendors: Little Dunkers from Charlotte; The Donutologist from Marietta, Ga.; Daylight Donuts from Johnson City, Tenn. and of course Mr. Bob’s of Marion and Mr. Bob’s of Old Fort.

Masiello said there will be 125 vendors with something for everyone.

Although doughnuts are the focus of the festival, there will be plenty else to eat as well. In addition to downtown Marion’s restaurants and Mr. Bob’s, the festival will feature Smokin’ Mountain Boys BBQ of Kings Mountain with their “mouth watering ribs,” chicken and barbecue. Dave’s Hot Dogs and Leisa’s Kettlecorn, both Marion food trucks, will sell their tasty foods. You will also be able to enjoy funnel cakes, smoothies, a doughnut sundae and New York cheesecake dipped in chocolate or cherry, according to organizers.

All proceeds from the Carolina Donut Festival and both races will go to McDowell County Schools.