AMHERST — When he was 8, a certain well-known local bakery owner began banging on a set of drums as he fantasized about making it big in a rock band someday.
“I wanted to be just like Ringo,” Tim Kiedrowski said with a laugh. “That never materialized.”
But the owner of Kiedrowski’s Simply Delicious Bakery is inviting Beatles fans to enter a world of “Fab Four” memorabilia, music, and specially concocted treats including “Ticket to Ride” cream sticks and “Yellow Submarine” lemon-flavored doughnuts during the business’ celebration of the 50th anniversary of the “British Invasion” the weekend of Feb. 7 to 9.
A lifelong fan of the legendary rock quartet, Kiedrowski speaks with enthusiastic affection as he points out a variety of Beatles displays that adorn the bakery’s front counter area.
The bakery’s gala coincides with the Beatles’ legendary Feb. 9, 1964, American debut on the “Ed Sullivan Show.”
The appearance made a big impression on the young Kiedrowski.
“They were each very talented musicians whose harmonies and skills were honed in Germany before they began playing in Liverpool (England),” Kiedrowski said.
The group’s subsequent celebrity and global success skyrocketed with the help of astute manager Brian Epstein.
“It was about the timing as well,” Kiedrowski said of the Beatles’ wintertime U.S. premiere. “Epstein said nothing ever happens in January and February.
“And he also put them in suits instead of leather jackets to look more respectable,” Kiedrowski said.
The lads’ equally famed “mop top” haircuts were inspired by a hairstyle popularized by German youth the band first performed in front of in the early 1960s.
Wryly noting that in another 50 years, remaining Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr and all of their millions of fans will be gone, Kiedrowski said he had to make the 50th anniversary a big deal.
Toward that end, there’s Beatles paraphernalia everywhere one looks around the Cooper Foster Park Road bakery. White-frosted cookies bearing the band’s famed logo sit on a countertop next to a display of Beatles dolls Kiedrowski recalled buying 20 years ago for $10 apiece at a Spencer Gifts store.
“Now they’re worth $150 on eBay,” he said.
The dolls are accompanied by small replicas of the electric guitars each played, as well as a life-size pair of black “Beatle boots” that were one symbol of the “Mod”-look made famous by London’s Carnaby Street fashion designers.
Photos Kiedrowski shared from a trip to Great Britain some years ago include one of him crossing London’s famed Abbey Road just as John, Paul, George and Ringo did for their final “Abbey Road” album cover.
The flood of memories the group triggers for Kiedrowski include those of the quartet’s first of two Cleveland concerts during a month-long American tour in 1964.
“WHK sponsored it and they played Public Hall,” Kiedrowski said. “Tickets were $4.75.”