Thirty-four-year-old Christopher Jackson was one of over 100 people that camped out on the grounds of the new Krispy Kreme in Waterloo on Friday ahead of its grand opening the following morning.
Jackson, who arrived at the establishment at 7:00 pm, said that it was upon seeing the tents and the people that he decided to take part in the camp out.
“I was following them on socials when they said that we could camp out. Still being a skeptic, I just passed through because I heard there were tents and stuff. So, I passed through, and I said to myself, ‘this really looks buzzy’. I saw an elderly couple there with their family and everything and definitely had a buzz. There was definitely some hype behind it,” said Jackson.
“Initially, I was one of those skeptics, I was like ‘you have people that are really going to camp out’. And then I went, and I saw a mutual friend there who said, ‘Christopher, come join us.’ And at the time when I got there, they were at - the count- probably about 39; so I ended up telling the lady, one of the organisers, that I wanted to participate but I had doubts about getting home and getting back in time to be part of the designated 100 persons. And she was like, ‘just try it, you never know what will happen,” added Jackson.
In order to spend the night, Jackson left the location and journeyed to his home in Spanish Town where he collected some items such as his sleepwear and bedding.
“After getting home and taking a shower and packing some stuff. I changed into my comfort clothing, track pants and an airy shirt, and I packed my sweater and I also walked with my mosquito swatter,” Jackson shared.
Returning at near 9:30 pm, Jackson received the ticket number ‘79’ which was indicative of the scores of people that had arrived since his departure to also partake in the camping experience.
Describing his actual rest as quite uncomfortable, Jackson said he instead took to fellowshipping with other campers, spending the time playing board games and dominoes throughout the night.
“I literally tried staying on the ground with the sheets that I packed, I found out that it wasn’t working for me because you know sometimes, we’re not used to a certain surface. So, I ended up using my car,” said Jackson.
At midnight, organisers had a roll call which was aimed at ensuring that persons had not simply taken tickets and left or were holding spaces for others.
While the roll call bumped him up in the queue, it was not by much with Jackson noting that when he entered the establishment at 9:00 am on Saturday, he had to wait well over an hour.
“It was a regular business day and also opening day. They opened at 9:00 am but I never got through until like 10:30 and I was bumped up to 61 after roll call. Based on the terms and conditions you had to buy a dozen doughnuts and, depending on the tier you were in, in terms of your ticket number, you got a special prize,” Jackson explained.
“The first person qualified for a year's supply of doughnuts. So, every month [the first person in the line] they will be given a box of doughnuts -that was first prize. Second, which is called silver, which is between second to 13th in line, will get six months of doughnuts. And from 14 onwards to 100 you get three months’ supply of doughnuts,” Jackson added.
Shortly after receiving his doughnuts, Jackson socialised with some of the Krispy Kreme officials who were on site, and later demitted the venue for his home where he shared the treats with his family.
According to Jackson, camping out for the opening was definitely a new and fun experience, one that provided a social bonding opportunity, which he believes served as a form of civic engagement, something he says is missing in today’s Jamaica.
Apart from the social experience, Jackson described the doughnuts as “quite tasty”, noting that the variety in flavours and fillings had something for every palate.
He further added that, among his favourites, were the Strawberry Cheesecake and the Caramel Kreme Crunch doughnuts.
A box of Krispy Kreme doughnuts retail for between J$1,200 (plain doughnuts) and J$1,600 (assorted doughnuts).