"Give a Piece a Chance." — Books. Blog. Pie Classes. And a Pinch of Activism.

A Documentary Film in the Baking

How did Iowa become synonymous with pie? Why are Iowans and outsiders alike so obsessed with it? And what lengths will people go to for a slice? More importantly, how can pie unite us? Pie is nonpartisan, symbolizing kindness, comfort, generosity, and unity—all the things we need more of right now, all of which will be showcased in PIEOWA: A PIECE OF AMERICA.

From Amish bakers barefoot in the kitchen to church ladies cranking out pies in rural church basements, from nostalgic diners to farmers markets, from generations old to young, to the fierce pie competitions of the Iowa State Fair, pie is woven into Iowa’s cultural fabric. There’s even a 500-mile bike ride across the state where people come from all over the world just so they can eat pie every day!

Producer/director of PIEOWA Beth Howard is the author of three pie-themed books and the former (and final) resident of the American Gothic House where she ran the Pitchfork Pie Stand. She takes viewers on a mouth-watering journey through her native state exploring pies of all kinds, meeting pie makers of all ages, exploring the history of the “pieoneers” who brought it to the Midwest, its importance to Iowans, and why it rivals corn and hogs as an iconic part of Iowa’s identity. Howard has experienced first-hand the influence of this association as she once got hired as a pie baker in Malibu, California. When asked “What are your qualifications?” she answered, “I’m from Iowa,” and got the job! In the documentary, Howard will expand on the themes of her TEDx talk, in which she espouses pie’s healing powers, how pie can build community, and how it can make the world a better place.


NOTE:  I am still in need of what they call “finishing funds” to pay for the various stages of editing (sound, color, music, graphics, etc.) so if watching the preview inspires you to make a contribution, go to Camp Dough Productions on PayPal.  (Contact me for tax deductible option.)

UPDATE MARCH 14, 2024 (aka National Pi Day, 3.14):  

We’re done with the filming phase of the documentary! It was a fun (and hot) summer adventure that spanned all the way to Thanksgiving. We covered RAGBRAI, the Des Moines Register’s annual bike ride across Iowa, a pie-lover’s mecca, and met so many great people from all over the world. Kudos to those who rode the entire 500 miles! We ate our way through the Iowa State Fair while filming the pie competitions, as well as the cow pie throwing and pie eating contests.

We’ve driven over 4,000 miles, interviewing pie shop owners, fruit growers, and pie bakers of all ages and abilities. We filmed a 95-year-old friend making a sour cream raisin pie. And we covered the ultimate pie holiday: Thanksgiving. We’ve started editing — a daunting task that I might have underestimated! — and still need to raise funds to cover finishing costs. Expenses include editing, color correction, sound design, music licensing, additional footage and so much more. If you have any suggestions or leads for funding, please get in touch,

Thanks for following along on this crazy but fulfilling adventure! Check back for updates. And make sure to look through the photo gallery below for pics from our shoots. For more regular updates, follow us on Facebook and Instagram at The World Needs More Pie.

Four slogans and colors to choose from in soft fabric. Made by RAYGUN. Ten dollars from each item goes toward funding the film.

Some pics from the film shoot