The Doughnut is Part of the Whole

Working on this project, I’ve learned that you never expect where a lead might take you or who you might bump into.

Case in point: After seeing an article about the Organ Grinder documentary project in Willamette Week, Tres Shannon, probably most famous for co-founding Voodoo Doughnut, reached out to us.

Tres loved going to the Organ Grinder restaurants in both Denver and Portland, and he was there in Portland on the final night in 1996. In fact, he was there for five hours! He told us about the poignant moment when organist Paul Quarino finished performing the final song, addressed the audience, and slowly shut down the console and lights for the last time.

Tres also attended the Organ Grinder 50th Anniversary benefit concert at Cleveland High School in the fall of 2023, bringing along with him three guests who had never before experienced theatre pipe organ entertainment.

During his interview, Tres covered a number of topics, including what inspiration for his own “whackadoo ideas” that he took away from his Organ Grinder experiences, to his opinions on beloved-but-bygone establishments (such as Farrell’s Ice Cream parlors), and his thoughts on new generations creating new experiences that will someday become beloved institutions.

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