Flying Saucer Pie Company’s crazy Thanksgiving pie line will look different amid the pandemic. Here’s what to expect this year.

Photo does not have a caption

Flying Saucer Pie Company, the beloved bakery in Houston’s Independence Heights neighborhood has proved its staying power. Opened in 1967, the Houston institution has baked thousands and thousands of pies in its time. Unsurprisingly, Thanksgiving is good for business.

The pre-Thanksgiving lines are notoriously long at Flying Saucer Pie Company. Many Houston residents simply can’t celebrate the season without its scrumptious, sought-after Dutch apple, pumpkin, pecan, and key lime creations.

A quick primer for Houston newcomers: Flying Saucer Pie Company does not take call ahead pie or cake orders the week of Thanksgiving or Christmas. The shop doesn’t take reservations and it doesn’t deliver. All its pies are first come, first serve. Translation: There’s no way to weasel your way out of waiting in line.

However you look at it, whether as an endearing Houston holiday tradition or as dreaded yet unavoidable chore, braving the shop’s pre-Thanksgiving pie line is quite an undertaking. It requires preparation, planning and, of course, an abundance of patience. This year, amid the pandemic, the shop will implement several COVID-19 safety measures to ensure the safety of its patrons and staff. Here’s what to expect if you plan to brave the line.

“It will look very similar to the past, just with more masks,” the pie shop said in a statement on its Facebook page.

This year, Flying Saucer Pie Company asks that customers in line maintain a six-foot social distance from those who are not in their party. Additionally, only one person per family will be permitted inside the shop.

“We’ve been maintaining standards behind the counter for months now, and a few minor changes in front of it should help everyone to have a safe and healthy holiday,” the pie shop said in a statement.

The shop said it expects its patrons will understand and abide by its pandemic policies.

“We have been asked if I expect anyone to cause problems or use the situation to make a statement,” the pie shop said in a statement."No, we really don’t. This is Houston.We are large and metropolitan and the most diverse city in the country, but that is our strength, because living with diversity only works if there is respect on all sides. Every time a storm is in the gulf, there is a chance we will have to depend on our neighbors, and it shows. That is our strength, and we fully expect our city to turn out, masked and socially distant, for a little slice of normal, Thanksgiving 2020."

Ahead of Thanksgiving, the shop will operate 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 23 through Tuesday, Nov. 24, and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 25.

Flying Saucer Pie Company is located at 436 W Crosstimbers St. in Houston; (713) 694-1141,

About the Author:

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team as a community associate producer in 2019. During her time in H-Town, she's covered everything from fancy Houston homes to tropical storms. Previously, she worked at Austin Monthly Magazine and KAGS TV, where she earned a Regional Edward R. Murrow award for her work as a digital producer.