Every morning for more than 50 years, the bakers at Warner’s Bakery in the town of Titusville, Pennsylvania – where America’s oil industry was born in 1859 – would awaken the town’s residents with the sweet smell of morning delectables – doughnuts, pies, danishes, and a special sugar cookie adorned with a colorful, smiling face.
This little smiling delight would peek out from the bakery case to passersby as workers made their way to oil wells and young children trudged off to the Main Street Elementary School.
One of those little boys couldn’t resist the smiling sweet treat. Almost every day – from the time he was old enough to walk to school, he peered into the bakery window and thanked his lucky stars that his mom, once again, had given him a nickel from her pocketbook to buy one of those precious, colorful smiling sugar cookies.
That little boy – Jim Broadhurst – would one day help spread the joy of that special smiling cookie to virtually every part of the world – from the White House to military serving in the far corners of the globe to every state in America. What began as a simple, childhood indulgence became a sweet treat enjoyed by millions every year.
You see, in 1973, Jim joined Eat’n Park Restaurants – a Pittsburgh-based family dining chain that originally opened in 1949 as a carhop restaurant. Under Jim’s guidance, it would grow to become one of the nation’s most popular full-service restaurant chains with more than 75 restaurants throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia.
Eat’n Park started baking “Smiley Cookies” in 1986 at every restaurant and began including a free Smiley Cookie with each child’s meal. Right then and there, history was made!