Two years after first opening in downtown Marion, Mr. Bob’s Do-Nuts is ready to expand into Old Fort.
In October 2014, Mr. Bob’s Do-Nuts opened its doors in the little building at 60 S. Main St. in Marion. This business in no time proved to be a big hit in Marion and beyond. There, owner Bob Masiello serves up doughnuts, cinnamon buns, Danishes, cannoli, bagels and cream cheese. Customers can also enjoy a cup of hot coffee with their treats, all of which is made fresh every morning. His apple ugly received national recognition from Food Network magazine and readers of The McDowell News continue to name his place the Best Bakery in McDowell.
And in May of this year, Masiello and events coordinator Leisa Morgan held the first ever Carolina Donut Festival in Marion, which was another huge success drawing hundreds of people to downtown Marion. This event featured a doughnut eating contest, a pageant, a 5K and a costume contest, among other fun activities.
Now, he is getting ready to open his second location in Old Fort. It will be in the former dentist office building that was used for many years by Dr. Cato Holler. It is located along East Main Street near Frisbee’s supermarket.
He plans to have it open and ready by December.
“It’s good here,” said Masiello in his Marion location. “But we’re going to expand and hopefully it will take off good. Hopefully, we will attract people from Black Mountain too. I thought it would be a good spot for a doughnut shop.”
The Old Fort location will have the same menu as the Marion one. But what will make it different will be the fact that Old Fort does not have a coffee shop, like the Crooked Door in downtown Marion. This will allow the Old Fort location to offer more different types of coffee along with the doughnuts, Danishes and bagels.
And the building in Old Fort is different. It will allow Masiello and his employees to create more of a coffee house or coffee shop atmosphere with additional seating and a fireplace. Inside, there will be couches and recliners and outdoor seating will be available too, he said.
“It will be more of a casual place,” said Masiello.
The operating hours will be similar but the Old Fort location will be open earlier to take advantage of the shift changes at the manufacturing plants.
Folks have asked Masiello if he plans to have a drive-through service in Old Fort. He said he will look into that for the future.
The Old Fort location for Mr. Bob’s will need a baker and more people to work the counter.
As for the Carolina Donut Festival, the 2017 event is scheduled for Saturday, May 20 in Marion.
Masiello said he want to reach to have every doughnut shop in the state and have them be a part of the 2017 festival. He added the festival will cover more of Main Street and there will be double the vendors. The pageant, the doughnut-eating contest, the 5K and the costume contest will all be back.
But new for the 2017 festival will be the raffle of a car from Jim Cook Chevrolet. The proceeds from this raffle will be donated to the McDowell County School System.
And if this wasn’t enough to keep him busy, Masiello received an invitation to be a vendor at the American Music Awards, which is scheduled for Nov. 20 in Los Angeles.
“There’s all kinds of stuff going on,” he said.
Masiello said this came about because of a record producer who came through Marion and enjoyed some of his doughnuts. Sometime after that, Masiello said he got an email inviting him to bring his tasty creations to the American Music Awards. He has to let them know by Monday, Oct. 31.
“I would do it in a second,” he said to The McDowell News.
However, it is not cheap. The vendor fee for the AMAs is $5,000 and then there would be the cost of traveling and staying at a hotel. Masiello said he thinks it would cost him around $12,000 to $15,000 to participate. He said he would have to drive to Los Angeles instead of flying and that would take a lot out of his business. And he’s got enough going on right now.
“It’s kind of cool,” he said. “I was just honored to be asked.”