Time To Make The Donuts

By Colleen Pierson

The time is 2:00a.m.and Marge Wilson, owner of Marge’s Donut Den on 28th Street, wakes up ready to make the donuts, cakes, cookies, and muffins.   She turns 80 in December, but that doesn’t stop this sweet dynamo from giving her all to community and business.

“I will always support this community through loyalty, and hard work—I try to give back every way I can,” Marge said.  And give back she does: Take the 222 wells campaign she has supported to provide drinking water to residents of SE Nigeria, or the countless amounts of non-profits she has helped. 

Macarons and other sweets

“She’s first of the first class, and has a heart bigger than life,” said Vince Portelli at a recent AMBUC community event.

Marge’s Donut Den, open for 44 years, is a fixture in West Michigan.  She arrives to her donut shop at 4 a.m., 365 days a year since she established her business in 1975.  Everything is made fresh from dough and batter to fillings and icings. Customer favorites are apple fritters and long johns.

“When we first started, we had about 14 different types of donuts, she explained.  Now we are at 60 different varieties.  My favorite is anything with chocolate or cinnamon sugar.”

Hundreds of customers enter through the doors daily where the slogan, “Be kind, Be good,” is placed.   You definitely are treated like family here.   Amy Mead, employee at Marge’s, says it well: “There is no place I would ever want to work than here.  So much joy and fun to be had on a daily basis.”

When I asked Marge Wilson what her future plans are, she hesitated, then said with a great chuckle…

Marge Wilson (on right) with Colleen Pierson

“It used to be people would ask me, what’s next for you Marge?  I would tell them, wait until I am 80 and ask.  Now, I have to say, ask me when I’m 85.”  

She has always believed that if you make a quality product, people will keep coming back.  And that belief should continue for many years to come.

Colleen Pierson is an EatGR guest contributor and former producer at WOOD TV8.

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