CLEVELAND - It’s a day to indulge, and the power of the Paczki is just too much for many dieters.
“Everyone eats it today because it’s Fat Tuesday,” said Tim Kiedrowski, owner of Kiedrowski's Bakery.
While you were sleeping, the staff at the Amherst bakery was busy.
“It’s all about tradition,” said Daniel Bilewicz.
The Polish tradition is a popular way to fatten up before Lent, since there are about 700 calories in just one Paczki.
“I’m going to widen the waistband a little bit, that’s alright,” said Mark Hawke.
Hawke was the first customer in line when the open sign lit up at 4 a.m.
“I heard that this place was one of the best places to come to, so I figured I’d give it a shot,” said Hawke.
Speaking of shots, they were flowing before 6 a.m., for customers waiting in line.
Sprinkle in some accordion action and you’ve got yourself a party!
“They can’t wait to wait in line just to be here for the party atmosphere,” said Kiedrowski.
But it’s not all fun and games here. The paczki making process is nothing short of insanity. At the height of the craziness, this bakery will turn out 200-dozen paczki an hour.
Kiedrowski’s only carries traditional flavors: apricot, poppyseed, prune and Polish rose.
“Which is a rose marmalade it’s made with real rose petals so it has that rose hue to it," explained Kiedrowski.
Among the bakery’s unusual customers, a local dentist, ordering 76-half-dozen. Kris Kiedrowski said that's fine with her. “I would rather have this than getting dental floss.”
The most surprising order though was one from retail-giant Walmart.
“The funny thing is they make paczkis, so they’re giving their employees our paczkis and they’re selling their paczkis,” said Kris Kiedrowski.
In all, Kiedrowski’s expects to sell 38,000 of the deep-fried donuts.
If you missed the fun here this year, there’s always next Fat Tuesday.
“It’s Mardi Gras, it’s paczki," said Danielle Cocco. "It’s paczki day, you have to be here, it’s tradition.”