PNE Donut Dash

Author: Shirley Wong

PNE Donut Dash Vancouver Barista best new cafes coffee shop review
Join the PNE Donut Dash and eat those little doughnuts for free


“We can’t rewind we’ve gone too far.”

-Buggles (from “Video Killed the Radio Star”)

Back in the day, Mike was known as Donut Man. He worked two summers at the Fair selling these addictive mini concoctions at the iconic doughnut shack, Those Little Donuts. But he really didn’t have to do much because the primitive doughnut machines did most of the work.

If you went to the PNE, you’ve joined the long lineup and seen it. Pillowy pastries travel like an obedient army along little conveyor belts, cook in the hot oil, then get dumped into a vat of powdery cinnamon-sugar mixture. A teenage staffer then quickly counts and scoops the doughy creations into a little paper bag, still steaming hot, into the hands of a hungry customer.

Inevitably, a doughnut would fall and get stuck in the mechanism, freezing the whole machine. At that point, a staffer would yell out, “JAM!” and a manager would hurry over with a long stick to unstick the doughnut, and the machine would continue on. Mike did all this for about $4.50 per hour.

PNE Donut Dash Vancouver Barista best new cafes coffee shop review

As an adult, what would you do for a free T-shirt and doughnuts? For Mike, the answer would be, apparently anything. (Note: Someone should organize a cycling race tied to doughnuts. Since these fried treats rank as one of his consistently favourite snacks, he would be the first to sign up.)

This week, when a friend of Mike’s asked if he was up to joining him in the inaugural PNE Donut Dash, Mike said yes, instantly.

If you haven’t heard of it, the race (and I am not joking) is quoted on the PNE website as, “Vancouver’s tastiest 5K Run where runners will be re-energized with tasty Fair treats throughout the course, including mini donuts, cotton candy and more!”

I looked into this event and was surprised and impressed at the package – so moved, that I agreed to join in this caloric suicide with a few friends:

  • $30 early bird registration includes a PNE Donut Dash t-shirt, race bib, finisher’s medal and admission into The Fair for Sunday, August 23.
  • For an additional $5, a timing chip will added to your package and your race results will be published.

PNE Donut Dash Vancouver Barista best new cafes coffee shop review

If the potential for cramps and stomach ache don’t deter you, join for the carb-fest and frivolity:

Date: AUG 23, 2015
The course: 5km around Empire Field & PNE Fairgrounds
Run start: 9am @ Empire Field (Note: There are staggered start times, depending on how leisurely you run or want to sample the food)

Related post:

PNE Donut Dash: Highlights & Video

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