A Pieless Pi Day?


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Hubbard Avenue Diner and Bakery was shocked by the overwhelming number of Middleton and Madison customers on this year’s Pi Day.

Laina Gustafson

Hubbard Avenue Diner and Bakery, a beloved Middleton institution, had its busiest day of the year this month: March 14, better known as Pi Day. To celebrate the 3.14 date — UNESCO’s “International Day of Mathematics” — pie lovers everywhere indulge in the circular treat of the same name. 

Hubbard Avenue Diner and Bakery, “Famous for Pie,” has cranked out over 200 pies each Pi Day for the last several years. But this year, something unprecedented happened, much to the dismay of its huge fan base: Hubbard Avenue ran out of pie!

Well, all pies except pumpkin. 

Florian Riese, a Middleton High School junior and Hubbard Avenue employee, described the hectic atmosphere of the 1940’s-esque diner on Pi Day. 

“We went through over 200 pies,” Riese said. “The last day to preorder a full pie for pickup is 30 days before March 14, so the kitchen has time to make all of them. The counters, kitchen, and pie case were absolutely covered in pie boxes!” 

Riese described working on Pi Day as overwhelming and stressful, but said most customers were understanding about the shortage. 

“We ran out of pie an hour, hour and a half before closing” said Riese. “This has never happened before. We’ve never run out of pie on Pi Day.,” Riese said. 

Part of the shortage stemmed from the diner’s “free slice” policy, which allows customers to get a slice for free if they come into the store wearing Hubbard Avenue merchandise on Pi Day. 

Not wanting to send their customers home empty handed when supplies ran low, Hubbard Avenue handed out cookies instead of pie to those with “free slice” shirts. The sweet substitutes were a hit, Riese reported, saying that “the little kids and babies are always the best customers.” 

On an average day, Hubbard Avenue Diner and Bakery boasts a large menu of diner classic entrees and deserts, as well as a rotating menu of signature pies. Available for preorder or by the slice, Hubbard serves everything from classic apple to fan-favorite mint oreo pie. 

Whether a pie-lover, math whiz or just a Hubbard Avenue Diner fan, the charming diner is certainly the place to be on March 14, at least before the pies run out!