Springfield-based Hurts Donut Co. won’t open in Ward Parkway Center until 5 a.m. Wednesday, but it isn’t worried about drawing customers in the predawn hours.
It expects fans to be camped out front, in the pedestrian plaza, for a chance to win free doughnuts for a year (a dozen a week) and to take part in opening day festivities.
Hurts will be open round-the-clock, serving dozens of flavors such as Andes Mint, Bavarian, Cereal Killer, Cosmic Brownie, Cookie Monster (with edible eyes), Cotton Candy, Maple Bacon and Smores.
A single glazed doughnut will be $1.20 and a dozen glazed doughnuts will be $10. Any dozen doughnuts that Hurts employees pick will be $13.50, but if it’s customer’s choice, it will be $16.50.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Kansas City Star
“Our doughnuts are almost twice the size and our cinnamon rolls and apple fritters are gigantic,” said Seth Corless, co-owner of the local Hurts franchise.
Hurts, at 8809 State Line Road in Ward Parkway Center’s Restaurant Pavilion, also will sell Long Johns, kolaches, doughnut milk shakes, nitro coffee and cold brew. The Maple Bacon Long John is one of the most popular orders.
The first Hurts Donut Co. opened in 2013 and the company now has 18 locations in 10 states. Five more are scheduled to open this year.
The name comes from the old-time joke of asking someone if they want a Hurts Donut. If they say yes, they get a punch on the arm followed by a “Hurts, don’t it.”
So the company has the Whambulance, a former ambulance converted to a doughnut truck and available for “emergency” doughnut deliveries but really just to cater large events.
And it sells coffee cups with a brass knuckle-like handle, Hurts Donut bandages and toy Whambulances.
Corless also has a location in Wisconsin, but this one is only about two miles from his home.
He gives a nod to the Kansas City location behind the scenes. A side of one commercial mixer boasts a University of Missouri logo, the other side the University of Kansas Jayhawk. Another mixer is split between Kansas City Royals on one side, Kansas City Chiefs on the other.
Hurts will host a 5K run next spring to benefit the Multiple Sclerosis Society, and it donates 50 cents to the charity for every water bottle sold at its shop.
Hurts is joining Duck Donuts, which recently opened in Leawood, and will soon be joined by The Dapper Dan, which plans to open later this month in Legends Outlets Kansas City. These chains not only plan more area locations, they will soon be joined by Rise Biscuits Donuts.
So is there enough demand for all these doughnuts?
Experts seem to think so. They say doughnuts offer variety — from traditional glazed to innovative flavors such as Maple Bacon — and also are an “affordable luxury” that appeals to consumers throughout the day from breakfast to snack time to desserts.
Sales for the morning meal also have grown for the last five years, while lunch and dinner sales are recovering after year ago declines, according to market researchers the NPD Group.