For 47 days and 47 nights, fans of Bill’s Donut Shop went without their favorite comfort food when comfort was needed most.
But as of 3 p.m. Sunday, May 3, that changed. The doughnut shop that has become a fixture in the Centerville community and a favorite among doughnut enthusiasts throughout the region reopened its doors to fans that flocked to the shop to be among the first to score a precious pastry or 12.
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The line to get in at the opening bell wrapped around the doughnut shop and down the sidewalk on Far Hills Avenue. The first customers to emerge triumphantly from the shop carrying their bounty were cheered by those still in line.
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The owners of Bill’s Donut Shop requested that all customers wear masks while in the store, as all employees were. The shop had shut down on March 16 as a precaution during the coronavirus pandemic.
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Bill’s isn’t just a local favorite. It has received national accolades. In 2017, People Magazine included Bill’s Donuts among the 12 doughnut shops in the U.S. that collectively represent one of the “100 reasons to Love America.” That shout-out came less than two weeks after Bill’s made a list of “The 15 Best Donut Shops in America” as compiled by BusinessInsider.com.
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Bill’s Donut Shop moved from its original downtown Dayton location to Centerville in 1967. In the 1970s, there were several Bill’s locations in the Dayton area, including Vandalia, Kettering and Huber Heights. The shop moved to its current location at 268 N. Main St. (Ohio 48) in 1979.