Thursday, May 19, 2022
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Local film explores history, people of Polson’s Lake City Bakery

by SCOT HEISEL
Lake County Leader | May 12, 2022 12:30 AM

Lake County residents will have a rare opportunity this week to view a film produced by local filmmakers about a local iconic business in a local movie theater.

Polson residents David and Jessica King are the husband-and-wife team behind the 2020 documentary “Burgers, Fries and Family Ties” about the popular and long standing Richwine’s Burgerville on Highway 93 in Polson. The Kings recently turned their attention to the Lake City Bakery along the same highway near Main Street.

“Baked by Grace” tells the story of the bakery, which quietly celebrated 50 years in business during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. The business, owned by Mike and Deneya Humphrey, has been open for 52 years, and lead baker Mike has worked there since he was 10 years old, when his parents operated the business.

Mike, whose grandfathers both were bakers, proudly describes himself as a “third-generation scratch baker.” He and Deneya purchased the business from his mother, Marilyn Humphrey, in 2016. His workday, five days a week, begins at 3 a.m., when he begins preparing doughnuts in the kitchen downstairs.

Along with providing some history on the bakery, “Baked by Grace” tells the story of how Mike and Deneya met at a local bar, and how they eventually discovered their faith.

“We weren’t living for the Lord,” Mike says in the film. “We did a lot of drugs, a lot of drinking and everything else that comes with that lifestyle.”

Deneya describes how Marilyn invited her to church and what a transformational experience it was. After turning their own lives around, the Humphreys have devoted a lot of their energy to helping others turn theirs around as well.

The Kings shot “Baked by Grace” over a few days in late February. The documentary consists primarily of interviews conducted with the Humphreys and their staff and loyal customers inside the business. Much of the film focuses on the Humphreys’ faith and commitment to helping others overcome drug and alcohol addiction.

Several staff members are interviewed extensively throughout the film, with much of that time spent with server Kat Perkins, who has business plans of her own, and popular counter worker Damian Innerbichler. Most people who visit the bakery remember Damian for his infectious positivity, and “Baked by Grace” tells the story of how he came to work for the Humphreys and the role they play in his life.

The film’s premiere is set for 4 p.m. Friday, May 13 at the Showboat Stadium 6, 416 Main St., and showings will continue daily through Thursday, May 19. A trailer for “Baked by Grace,” which has a run time of about one hour, is available at the Showboat website, polsontheatres.com. David King said a Q&A session with key people from the film will follow Friday’s premiere screening.

The premiere coincides with a visit from the Humphreys’ son, Noah, a Marine who is stationed at Camp Pendleton in San Diego. A photo of Noah in his uniform hangs on the wall behind the bakery’s doughnut case.

The Kings also operate the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest (FLIC) film festival at Showboat, which celebrated its 10th year in January.

Jessica served as producer on “Baked by Grace,” while David was producer/director. They have submitted the film for showings at upcoming film festivals across the globe and the film has already garnered interest from festivals in Vancouver, Rome and Australia.

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David and Jessica King stand outside of Lake City Bakery with their children, Marcus and Claire. (Courtesy of Damian Innerbichler)

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Regular customer Russell, who is deaf, has been teaching server Kat Perkins sign language. (Courtesy of David W. King)