In October Bill’s Donut Shop will be celebrating 54 years in the donut business!
The shop was founded in 1960 by Bill and Faye Elam originated in downtown Dayton. Through the years, Bills Donut Shop has moved numerous times. In the 1970’s, there were multiple locations in the Dayton area including the cities of: Vandalia, Wilmington, Kettering, and Huber Heights. Over time, the Elam’s decided to focus their resources and talents in one store location.
In 1967, the shop was located at the intersection of Franklin and Main, close to where Panera Bread is today and the parking was one of the biggest problems in those days. Bill Elam admits that the added parking available in the current location was a big motivator in moving. In the earlier years, Bills was not open 24 hours a day. The advent of the third shift arose from the need of late night workers who would travel to work for NCR. “Back in those days, NCR was going strong and everybody south of town worked there. They all took Route 48 home-to Centerville, Lebanon or Springboro.” Faye says. Many Centerville residents worked for the company and for a while Bill would provide coffee and donuts to the workers at the back door using the honor system. Within a month, third shift was launched. In 1979 Bill’s moved to its current location at 268 N. Main Street in Centerville.
In 1995, Bill & Faye sold the family business to two of their children, Lisa & Jim Elam. They have made sure that the friendly atmosphere and hospitality that has defined the shop since its beginning remains a mainstay today. When asked why the shop has been such a success, Lisa said, “We know many of our customers by name, we’re very family oriented.”
In April of 2013 USA today featured Bill’s Donuts in their list of “10 great places to get doughnuts.”
In honor of their anniversary, Bill’s Donuts will be selling raffle tickets with 100% of the proceeds to benefit The Special Wish Foundation. There will be many prizes awarded, shirts, hoodies, mugs, gift baskets, etc. The grand prize will be one dozen donuts a week for a year.
Tickets go on sale the first of October and they will sell them throughout the month. The cost will be $1.00 each or six for $5.00. Stop by, pick ups some donuts and and help support this very worthwhile organization.