Jeannie Hadley’s hands are full.
The Lake Worth resident walks slowly to her sporty Kia Soul carrying a bunch of pies — apple, pumpkin, blueberry, pecan, German chocolate — she bought from Upper Crust.
“I try to get something everyone likes,” said Hadley, 60. “I’ve been coming here for 30 years because they make good pies and they’re really nice.”
Upper Crust, a city staple on North Dixie Highway, is a Thanksgiving must visit for many.
The pie maker has been in business for 40 years after Raul Quintero moved his family from Pompano Beach to Lake Worth to start a cake shop.
Jodie Quintero, Raul’s daughter-in-law and Upper Crust’s bakery manager, has worked at the store for more than 30 years.
She said Upper Crust sells more than 6,000 pies for Thanksgiving, with the most popular being apple, pumpkin and pecan.
“It’s our busiest week of the year,” she said. “I don’t know how many hours I work. The baker, my husband Rudy, works nonstop. He goes out for a few hours to sleep and comes back.”
Stephanie Ingel, Upper Crust’s bookkeeper, said the staff looks forward to all the craziness and the inevitable line that snakes outside the shoebox-sized store.
“That’s what helps us stay open year-round,” Ingel said. “We make it now and get through the rest of the year.”
During the week leading up to Thanksgiving, Upper Crust boosts the number of employees from four to 15.
“There’s a lot of anxiety now,” Jodie said. “I always want to make sure everyone walks out the door with the pie they want for Thanksgiving. We’ve become a tradition for people, so if they don’t have that, I’m not too happy.”