The History and Legacy of Britt's Donuts

Britt's Donuts: Don't ask for sprinkles, don't ask for cream filled and for goodness sakes, don't forget to eat as many as you can in the summer because Britt's is only open during the tourist season.  

Some things never seem to change. I know it is all perspective, but eating a hot, delicious, handmade donut at Britt's is one of those experiences that doesn't need any embellishments. Started by the Britts and Wrights in 1939, the donut shop has long been the cornerstone of the Boardwalk area.

People drive from all over just to eat one or 19 of the steaming hot - glazed delicacies.  A fellow actually consumed that many in an impromptu donut eating contest recently. The process of making the donuts is a time honored, tightly guarded secret. It is thought that the unique mix of ingredients for the glaze makes them so unbelievably good. People who don't even like donuts or sweets will gobble down six Britt's donuts in a heartbeat. Why, I myself have eaten 9 for supper before.

Mr. Britt sold the shop and the secret recipe for making the donuts in 1974. Britt's long time employee Bobby Nivens purchased the shop. Since then, the Nivens family has cooked up and served hundreds of thousands of donuts to people from all over. During the summer season, you can sit on one of the stools at the counter and hear people order their favorite treat. You can tell the ones who aren't familiar with the drill. "Do you have anything besides glazed?" they say. The regulars always tell the girl behind the counter... "I'll have 1" or "Gimme a half dozen" or very often they'll say "4 dozen, please".

Bobby Nivens and his family have operated Britt's Donut Shop on the Boardwalk in Carolina Beach for over 30 years. Nivens has always included his family in his business. His daughter Lynn grew up working behind the counter. Maxine, his wife, still serves up the donuts, milk and soft drinks to eager patrons all summer long and now his grand daughter helps out as well. You can bet that swimming weather, warm breezes and bare feet are soon to appear when you can smell the aroma of donuts cooking at Britt's.

Daniel Ray Norris - 2006

From Carolina Beach, NC - Images & Icons of a Bygone Era
SlapDash Publishing, LLC, 2006

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Britt's Donuts hours of operation please call: (910) 707-0755


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