TUPELO • After 30 years in the doughnut business, Scarlet Wilson is ready to slow down a bit. With four stores bearing her name, Wilson said she still loves what she’s doing, but she’s ready to travel a little more and enjoy life.
On March 28, she’ll be locking the doors for good on the Scarlet’s Donuts shop on South Gloster Street, the store that started it all. But she wanted to make clear she’s not retiring. The Cliff Gookin Boulevard and North Gloster Street stores will remain open, as will the recently opened New Albany location.
“I’ve been doing this for 30 years and I’m old and worn down,” Wilson said with a laugh. “But I’ll still be at the Cliff Gookin store working.”
The handful of workers at the South Gloster store will transfer over to the Cliff Gookin store, Wilson added.
“It’s our flagship, and I have some mixed feelings about closing it,” she said. “We’re so very thankful for all of our great customers over the years, and we hope to keep seeing them at one of our other stores.”
Wilson’s family is synonymous with doughnuts. Her mother and father opened the first Shipley’s Donuts in Greenville in 1959, and one brother still has the Mississippi franchise rights for Shipley’s. All her siblings, in fact, have doughnut stores in Vicksburg, Hattiesburg and Nashville, though not all are Shipley’s.
She and her husband, David, moved to Tupelo in 1990 and opened the South Gloster Street store. The Cliff Gookin store opened in 2002. The North Gloster store, operated by her daughter, Amber Wilson Gentry, and her husband, Jeremy Gentry, opened in 2016.
It was in 2015 when Wilson closed out her Shipley’s franchise and renamed her shop.
The South Gloster building is up for sale, and Wilson said having it reopen as a Scarlet’s or another doughnut shop is not an option.