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Nelson’s Donuts makes anticipated return to Lake Charles

After two years of renovation, a Lake Charles favorite has reopened its doors
Published: Aug. 24, 2021 at 9:51 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Nelson’s Donuts closed two years ago after a fire destroyed the original building, but recently, the popular donut shop opened its doors to customers once again.

A year after the fire destroyed Nelson’s, Jessica Evans bought the shop from her great uncle, Nelson himself. She was hoping to get started right away on renovations so she could reopen the popular spot.

“We started trying to rebuild, COVID hit, hurricane hit, flood hit, freeze hit, so it took us over a year to rebuild,” Evans said.

Now after two long years of waiting, Evans was finally able to open the shop again over the weekend, with the help of her family and friends.

As soon as the door opened, customers rushed to the shop to grab donuts by the dozen.

“Now that we’re open and I see all the love from Lake Charles, it’s like they wanted it just as much as we did,” Evans said.

The shop had a soft opening Friday but still had a big turnout and sold out before they were planning on closing for the day. Saturday, the official grand opening, kept workers busy making donuts from open to close.

“Saturday was busier. Sunday was even busier. Today is Tuesday, and for a Tuesday, it feels like what Saturday used to feel like,” Evans said.

Saturday morning around 7 a.m., Nelson’s line was all the way down McNeese street. Even on Tuesday at 10 a.m., the crowds were still coming, and the line was wrapped around the building.

Saying that locals were excited is an understatement.

“Everybody that comes to the window is so happy to see us. They just are smiling, and like, ‘We’re so glad to see you open. We’re so glad to see that it stayed in the family and the same recipe.’ I had one person say they saw that open sign and it was like the gates of heaven opened up, and I was like, ‘Man, that’s some serious donuts right there,’” Evans said.

The family-owned and operated donut shop is thankful for all of the support customers and the community have shown.

“I just want to say thank you, and thank you to Lake Charles. It’s just very emotional,” Evans said.

Nelson’s Donuts is open Tuesday through Sunday from 4 a.m. to 1 p.m. and is located at 813 E. McNeese St.

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