Daylight Donuts is reopening in a new location

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Bags of donut holes ready to go at Daylight Donuts. Thursday, May 9, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Daylight Donuts has found a new home on Iowa City’s east side. Daylight is moving into the space at 1681 S 1st Ave, which used to be Sun Cafe, the owners announced on Monday in a Facebook post.

The donut shop has been closed since May, when it lost its lease on the East Court Street location that had been its home since Scott and Vicki Ward opened the shop in July 2011.

“The location that we’ve been fortunate enough to lease for the last eight years is in the process of being sold,” the Wards explained in a post on Daylight’s Facebook post at the time.

Scott Ward told Little Village in September he wanted to keep Daylight on the east side, even though it was easier to find suitable spaces in other parts of the city.

The 1st Avenue location became available because Sun Cafe has moved to 953 S Riverside Dr, taking over the space that used to house Zio Johno’s. The Italian restaurant has relocated to 342 Hwy 1 West, and will reopen in a section of what used to Paul’s Discount.

There are almost 1,000 Daylight Donuts shops in 28 states, all of which are independently owned. What the shops have in common are ingredients and recipes from the Daylight Donut Flour Company.

Tommy and Lucille Day started the Daylight Donut Flour Company in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1954. “They produced their famous light donut mix each morning and sold it to shops in the afternoon, mostly from the trunk of their car,” according to the company’s site. There were 200 Daylight Donuts shops by the time the Days retired in 1977.

The Wards haven’t announced an opening day for their new location.

“We look forward to seeing many of our old friends and making new ones,” the Wards wrote in their Monday Facebook post.

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  1. String Theory — Paul’s becomes Zio Johno’s becomes Sun Cafe becomes Daylight Donuts. It will be good to have them back. My staff loves when I bring some boxes in.

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