AMHERST, Ohio — A winter storm is exactly what Bob Becka, the manager of Sutton Industrial Hardware in Cleveland, has been waiting for.
“Salt is huge,” he said. “That’s what everybody seems to buy here. We love this time of year. It’s great for business.”
He said they’ve been busy for days as people prepare for the storm.
“We have the shovels, the salt, the calcium, ice melt. We are ready to roll.”
As the snow continued to roll in, workers at Kiedrowski’s Bakery in Amherst were continuously rolling dough. But they weren’t preparing for the storm, but rather, for Fat Tuesday.
Also known as Paczki Day.
“It’s not a doughnut. It’s so much more than that,” remarked Tim Kiedrowski, the co-owner of the bakery.
He said they have people come from hundreds of miles to get their hands on one of the paczkis.
“We have people coming from Wickliffe, Willoughby, Sandusky, Toledo to come to Kiedrowski’s for paczkis. It’s what you do. It’s tradition,” he said.
Kiedrowski said he is still expecting a lot of people to show up, no matter the weather. But they’re extending Paczki Day to Paczki week.
“If the snow is a little too high for you, we totally understand, we will be here all week,” said Michael Kiedrowski, Tim’s son.
Some customers like P.T. Barnum decided to get their sweet treats early.
“Definitely better safe than sorry. I can’t imagine letting everyone down not having paczkis. Normally, I’m here tomorrow morning bright and early and I get it to everyone back home about half an hour, 40 minutes away.”
It’s a tradition that has withstood the test of time.
“About 7 years ago it was 20 degrees and I had said ‘wow it can’t get any colder than this,’ the next year, it was 4 below, but people still came out and waited in line,” said Kiedrowski.
He said he is confident that people will continue to come out for their tasty treat, snow or shine.
“God threw us a little loop, right now, with the big storm, but this is nothing.”