Duck Donuts came to West Chester Saturday, Dec. 1. However, The Quad was invited for a little sneak preview Wednesday, Nov. 28. I was lucky to go and represent West Chester University — and I got the full tour.
I stepped through the glass door into the bright, beachy colors on the walls that transported me right out of the winter season and into the Outer Banks, NC. The lovely PR Manager of Duck Donuts, Kristin Kellum, greeted me and gave me a brief history of the company.
Duck Donuts began in 2006 in Duck, North Carolina — giving the store its name — with Russell A. DiGilio. Realizing there was no good place to get a decent doughnut, DiGilio made the decision to found Duck Donuts, which he eventually franchised. Since then, 74 locations opened nation-wide, making the location opened Saturday, Dec. 1, in our own lovely town of West Chester, number 75.
Complete in Duck Donuts merchandise, the owners of the opening location, Terry and Matt Matalavage, introduced themselves to me. Terry talked to me a little about how she and her husband got involved with the company.
“My husband [Matt] and I were on vacation in the Outer Banks. We took the kids to Duck Donuts and just got hooked,” said Terry. “We heard about the Avalon location in New Jersey. We’ve lived in Chester County for about 10 years and wanted to bring the location here.”
It is fairly common for organic growth to occur. Loyal customers of Duck Donuts like the Matalavages often turn into owners. A huge pull to the franchise is the emphasis on family and community. Kellum directed me right up at the register and pointed to a barrel of cute, rubber ducks for the kids and the merchandise hanging on the wall in purple for West Chester University’s campus.
Terry hopes to collaborate with West Chester University and local high schools for fundraisers to welcome the community into their place of business. To further welcome our University, Duck Donuts is working on the ability to accept RAMbucks as a form of payment.
“Eventually, we want to put a suggestion box up front where our customers can give us feedback,” said Matalavage.
Unique to Duck Donuts, your doughnuts are made-to-order with a vanilla cake base, iced with the flavors of your choice and topped with the sprinkles, crumbs or drizzles of your choice — just pay the base fee of the doughnut and your icing and toppings are free of charge, no matter how much you pile on.
If you’re not so adventurous to create your own doughnut, Duck Donuts offers crafted doughnuts, such as the “Smores Doughnut” with chocolate icing, marshmallow drizzle and graham cracker crumbs or the “Blueberry Pancake” with maple syrup and blueberry drizzle.
Customers can see it all happen through a glass window on an assembly line — even the kids can see on a raised step. Duck Donuts promises that receiving your box of doughnuts should take between five to seven minutes after ordering with the intention that their doughnuts are grab-and-go. However, in the warmer seasons, patio seating will be available outside if you’d prefer to stop to munch on your delicious breakfast sweet.
Duck Donuts puts an amazing twist on doughnuts. Your morning meal could also consist of a doughnut as a breakfast sandwich! Duck Donuts offers coffee and specialty drinks. What else better to pair with a tasty doughnut?
Matt walked me along the assembly line and I had the opportunity to watch doughnuts be prepared in front of me — fried and flipped. Terry offered me a pair of gloves, so I could ice and top doughnuts myself. Kellum, the experienced dipper, showed me the proper way to get a perfectly iced doughnut and I left with a dozen to share with my friends.
I highly recommend going and checking out the fabulous treats served by a lovely staff at Duck Donuts. You can find Duck Donuts at 1353 Dilworthtown Rd. in West Chester, Pa., about ten minutes from campus.
Kirsten Magas is a third-year student majoring in English with minors in biology and creative writing. KM867219@wcupa.edu