The History of Honey Dew
The Early Years
Richard ‘Dick’ Bowen is introduced to the world of donuts at the age of 12 where he baked donuts with his dad at a local donut shop. He was enthralled with the business and it was during this time where he got his hunger for entrepreneurship. He came up with the name for his future company, “Honey Dew Donuts”, during a high school English class. In 1965, Dick graduates from Stoughton High School and enlists in the US Army. He is deployed to Germany where he was a mechanic, and also baked donuts.
On June 6th, Dick’s dream becomes a reality when he opens his first (and what he thought would be his only) Honey Dew Donuts in downtown Mansfield, MA. A couple of years later, a customer approached Dick with the idea that he would open a shop under the name Honey Dew Donuts. After much debate, Dick agreed and so, the Honey Dew Donuts Franchise is born.
“Always Fresh, Always Good”® becomes the tagline.
In 1978, Honey Dew Donuts in Plainville, MA is the first coffee and donut shop to implement a drive thru window in New England. Also that year, the Cinnamon Stick is born after experimenting when Dick and his baker at the Mansfield shop were snowed in during the Blizzard of ’78.
In late 1980’s, Honey Dew Donuts builds ‘50’s style concept shops in Norton and Fairhaven, Mass., complete with a juke box and neon lights. Classic Car Nights were often held at these shops to really bring back the feel of that time period. During the late 1980’s, Honey Dew Donuts, continued growing at fast pace and the number of shops more than doubled by the end of the decade.
Honey Dew Donuts introduces “Mocha Madness ™”. The tasty concoction was created by Dick while he was on a family ski trip. He was looking for something chocolaty and warm, but could also give him a little energy!
In 1999, Honey Dew Donuts celebrates 25 years by opening its 100th shop in Foxboro, MA. At this time, there are now over 45 franchisee families that make up Honey Dew Donuts. Also In 1999, The Honey Dew Donuts Scholarship Fund is created. Each spring, Honey Dew Donuts awards one senior from each town where a Honey Dew does business. A golf tournament is held each fall where all proceeds go directly to the fund.
In 2002, the training center is born in Plainville, MA – A fully operating store where brand new franchisees go to perfect themselves as owners and operators. This is also the shop where new products are tested for quality control before rolling out chain-wide. The corporate offices would later move to the second floor of the building, above the training center in 2005.
In 2003, Honey Dew Donuts celebrates a “Sweet 30” Anniversary. At this time there are over 140 shops, 65 franchise families and over 20 corporate employees.
In 2005, Honey Dew Donuts established the ‘Dew Good Award’, which recognizes members of the community for outstanding citizenship, going above and beyond, and often times risking their own safety. The first award was given to Chris Baker for rescuing a woman out of a submerged car after an accident in the town of Norton, MA. Because of his courageous efforts, he was awarded coffee for life from Honey Dew Donuts.
In 2007, Honey Dew joins forces with The National Breast Cancer Foundation and becomes “Committed to the Cause”. Each year, Honey Dew Donuts raises money during the month of October by selling pink ribbons in all shops. To date, Honey Dew has given over $350,000 to the foundation and won’t stop until a cure is found.
In the spring of 2012, Honey Dew Donuts launches a series of commercials featuring the ‘Try Thru,’ endorsing their continued commitment to quality and service. Olivia Culpo, at the time Miss Rhode Island, was featured in the first commercial. She would later go on to win the title of Miss Universe 2012.
In 2013, Honey Dew Donuts® will celebrate its 40th Birthday! The famous bear will make his return, along with store specials and fun contests in the month of June! Stay tuned for much more on our big birthday party!