Archive for Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Neon sign, doughnut recipes from Joe’s Bakery sold to KU Memorial Unions

May 3, 2011


On the street

Do you have a favorite piece of memorabilia?

I have a Ken Griffey Jr. rookie card.

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The sign that lit the way for many Kansas University students to get a late-night fix for doughnuts, egg salad sandwiches and other munchies at Joe’s Bakery is headed to KU.

The KU Memorial Unions purchased the blue neon Joe’s Bakery sign that hung on the east side of the building at 616 W. Ninth St. at an auction for $1,000, said Mike Reid, director of communications for the KU Unions.

“I’m just tickled to death,” said Ralph Smith, son of Joe Smith, who opened the Lawrence bakery in 1952. He bought the restaurant from his father, and would later sell it to other owners before it closed for good in October 2007.

The doughnut shop was quite popular among students, Reid said, likely because of its late hours of service. He said members of the Class of 1961, back on campus for their 50-year reunion recently, listed Joe’s Bakery as among of their top 10 memories of KU.

The purchase of the sign included about 50 recipes that came with the sign, and the rights to use the Joe’s Bakery name when selling the doughnuts.

“They’re covered with gunk,” he said. “You can tell they’ve been used.”

But don’t expect to see Joe’s doughnuts popping up at, say, the Crimson Cafe in the Burge Union any time soon, Reid said, though they will use the recipes for special occasions.

That includes at 3 p.m. Thursday, when the sign will be unveiled at the Hawk’s Nest on the first floor of the Kansas Union. Free Joe’s doughnut holes will be provided to anyone who wants some, while quantities last, and some of Ralph Smith’s children are scheduled to attend.

There’s no secret to the recipes, Reid said — other than hard work — adding that one would likely go on display with the sign.

The funds used to purchase the sign came from KU Memorial Unions’ own funds, which are drawn from student fees and sales from the Unions’ operations — which include KU Dining Services, bookstores and other small stores on campus, Reid said.

Ralph Smith said he remembered the store fondly, and essentially grew up there, watching his father work. He said he thought KU was a good place for the sign.

“I remember Wilt Chamberlain walking through the doors,” he said.


jhawkinsf 7 years ago

Stumbling home from the bar, getting an egg salad sandwich. The Best.

broddie 7 years ago

Stumbling home from the bar, getting an egg salad sandwich, puking all over your shoes, passing out in the alley. The Best.

Pitt_Mackeson 7 years ago

Stumbling home from the bar, getting an egg salad sandwich, puking all over your shoes, passing out in the alley, pooping your pants. The Best.

Keith 7 years ago

What day of the week would you like us to worship your prescience?

Loretta James 7 years ago

The lady your talking about was Joann Dolan she is deceased. I worked there for about 4 years it was a good job loved working for Mrs. Smith she was a sweetheart. Joann must of worked there for about 25 years. She made sandwiches and frosted cookies and anything else that needed to be done. My favorite was the torpedo sandwich and the donuts and sugar cookies. mmmmmmmmmmm

Watteb04 7 years ago

I want them to sell Sugar Cookies. This is unfair! I want Joe's Bakery sugar cookies available to purchase like the ol' days.

Charles L. Bloss, Jr. 7 years ago

It is too bad that they don't make the doughnuts all the time, like the bakery did. Thank you, Lynn

ranger73 7 years ago

fart sandwiches! what were the big cinnimon crispy things? Those were good too. Torpedo on wheat was good too-had to get one of the big sugar cookies with those!

Bobo Fleming 7 years ago

Only way that I got thru finals was stops at Joe's. One time I pulled a late night study session went to Joe's and found my Asian history Prof there. I think he was working on the exam final test and I was working on getting ready to take it.

FlintlockRifle 7 years ago

Oh, for a " GOOD OLE JOE'S" donut, use to drive by and wait for the light to come on, donuts were hot and greasy, but sooooooo good

Clickker 7 years ago

This place was the precursor to Krispy Kreme. Much better

Adrienne Sanders 7 years ago

I want an apple fritter... no one else's compare at all.

Ricky_Vaughn 7 years ago

KU should just officially buy City Hall already and get it over with...

Jama Crady Maxfield 7 years ago

The big cinnamon crispy things were called "pig ears"......or at least that's what my dad would call them when we'd load in the car on a summer night and head to Joe's for a late night "pig ear". Great memories. Good job KU!

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