Donut Day is Around the Corner: June 7th

May 31, 2019

June means sunshine, vacation, Father’s Day. And donuts!

National Donut Day, which falls on June 7 this year, is not only a delicious excuse to indulge in pastries, it’s a reminder of The Salvation Army’s rich history of Doing The Most Good.

In 1917, The Salvation Army began a mission to provide spiritual and emotional support for U.S. soldiers fighting in France during WWI. About 250 volunteers traveled overseas and set up small huts located near the front lines where they could give soldiers clothes, supplies and, of course, baked goods.

After discovering that serving baked goods would be difficult considering the conditions of the huts and the limited rations, two volunteers – Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance – began frying donuts in soldiers’ helmets. These tasty treats boosted morale and won the hearts of many soldiers. Nicknamed “Donut Lassies,” the women who served donuts to troops are often credited with popularizing the donut in the United States when the troops (nicknamed “doughboys”) returned home from war. The Salvation Army continued to serve donuts and provide care to American soldiers during World War II as well.

The very first celebration of National Donut Day – held right here in Chicago in 1938 – raised funds for people in need during the Great Depression. Today, the unofficial holiday offers a way to honor the memory of soldiers, and is always on the first Friday in June.

This year, The Salvation Army Metropolitan Division has once again teamed up with Clyde’s Donuts, a legendary bakery in Addison, Illinois – another Chicagoland original. For 99 years, the bakery has made and provided a variety of donuts and baked goods to local grocery stores and restaurants in the Chicago area and beyond. If you’ve grabbed a donut hole or a glazed pastry from a Jewel-Osco or other grocery store, you’ve certainly enjoyed a Clyde’s Donut!

Other local donut shops have joined in the fun, supporting fundraiserseven donut-eating contestswith local Salvation Army Corps Community Center. Learn more and see a list of our Donut Day events.

On Donut Day, The Salvation Army works to raise awareness and support for its services to those in need, including providing shelter, food, early childhood education, after-school programming, emergency disaster recovery, rescue from human trafficking, music education, alcohol and substance use rehabilitation and more.

Celebrate with us this Donut Day!

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