During the mid 1960's, the local Kiwanis Club in Pocahontas,
Iowa, was preparing for their annual pancake supper. Since the preparation
and presentation of the meal was labor intensive, requiring a large
group of men, the idea of building a portable grill capable of serving
large groups of people in a short span of time was contrived by Mr.
Lorin Christiansen. His idea was to build the grill and reduce the workload
at the pancake event and, occasionally, lease the grill to other groups.
However, since Lorin was the primary cook and always the entertainment
it was natural that he and his grill become a team. Thus, Chris Cakes
Pancake Catering was founded.
The business catered to civic organizations initially
but soon the agricultural implement dealers, tire manufacturers and
other businesses in the area were calling to have Lorin provide the
food and entertainment for their customer appreciation days, grand openings
and employee appreciation days. The serving area soon expanded to include
Iowa, Minnesota, North and South Dakota and a small portion of Nebraska.
During the ensuing years, churches, schools and more civic organizations
were looking upon the pancake feeds as a great fundraising idea. The
name Chris Cakes was becoming well known throughout the area and soon
the Des Moines Register--who sponsors the bike ride across Iowa called
"RAGBRAI"--was interested in the catering service. Soon, other
bike rides, fishing tournaments and additional fundraising organizations
were calling regarding the catering service that provides a great meal
prepared fast, efficient and reasonably priced with a fun time for all
January, 1992, the business was sold to Coterie Enterprises, Inc. a
Missouri based Corporation that is family owned. The owners, Gregg,
Donna, Darren, Evonne and Ted White continue to operate the business as Chris
Cakes and have expanded the original five states to eight by including
the states of Illinois, Oklahoma, and Texas.
Chris Cakes provides its own blend of pancake mix--which
is sold in over 200 specialty shops and supermarkets--maple
syrup, sausage, margarine, orange drink, coffee and all tableware at
each of its pancake feeds. It takes approximately one and one half hours
to set up and one hour to break down and only requires their host to
provide the place, table and chairs, and four to eight people to help
serve, depending on the number of to be served. There is no charge for
the fun and entertainment that is provided.