New owner of Steamboat business doesn’t mind getting up early to make doughnuts
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — It’s after 2 p.m. and things are quiet at Powder Day Donuts, as Sue and Jeff Fegelein, new owners of the downtown Steamboat Springs business, sit in the restaurant’s dining room surrounded by the enticing smell of freshly made donuts.
Jeff has been at work since 3 a.m.
“I had been telling Sue for the year and a half when I was working here that I knew how to run this place,” Jeff said. “Then the time came, and she told me to ‘put up, or shut up.’”
Jeff worked at the former Milk Run Donuts from 2015 to 2016 before leaving. And when the couple discovered the business was for sale, they jumped at the opportunity to make it their own.
Jeff will run the operations, which includes getting up early to make the doughnuts each day, and Sue will continue to serve in her role at executive director of LiftUp of Routt County, a position she has held since March 2017.
“Jeff is running Powder Day Doughnuts, and I am staying at my beloved job as executive director at LiftUp,” she said. “I don’t want people to think I’m leaving.”
The Fegeleins took over the doughnut shop last month and recently renamed the former Moose Watch Cafe and Milk Run Donuts to Powder Day Donuts.
Skiing brought Jeff to the Yampa Valley in 1994, and he has worked in the restaurant business for years with stints at Big Tunas, La Montana and Antares. He met Sue in 1997, and the two will celebrate their 19th wedding anniversary in June.
Their two children are overjoyed their parents have purchased a doughnut shop. Huck, who will turn 10 this month, loves Boston cream doughnuts, and 7-year-old sister Jane is a big fan of glazed doughnuts.
The Fegeleins are planning to make a few changes to the business, but the couple said their main goal is to keep supplying hot, fresh doughnuts to the community — something the business has been doing since it opened its doors in 2011.
The shop will continue to offer all the standard doughnuts like chocolate sprinkles, cookies and cream and chocolate peanut butter. There is also a rotating menu of featured doughnuts that include tie-dye vanilla, a salted chocolate and popcorn, espresso glazed and the ever-popular maple bacon.
The lunch menu has been streamlined, but Powder Day will continue to offer coffee from Steamboat Coffee Roasters, a full espresso bar, cold beverages and yogurt. The business will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. The shop’s Facebook page will be used to announce special “pop-up” events when the shop will offer expanded hours. The Fegeleins hope to begin participating in the First Friday Artwalk and will have a booth at the Steamboat Springs Farmers Market.
Jeff said the doughnuts will be the focus.
“They make people happy,” Jeff said. “To sum our strategy up, it’s just more doughnuts.”
The Fegeleins also have plans to feature a nonprofit once a week at the business, which is located in the Victorian building at 941 Lincoln Ave.
“We want to be a very community-focused business, part of that is featuring a different organization every week,” Sue said. “The nonprofits will be able to sign up on the Yampa Valley Community Foundation calendar once we get going.”
She said each nonprofit will have a chance to decorate a bulletin board informing people about the group, and there will be a donation box where customers can donate to the featured nonprofit. The shop also plans to make a donation based on the sales that week.
“We are still kind of figuring it out, but we will do some percentage of something,” Sue said.
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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