Doughnut delivery by drone in Denver is a peek at the future

DENVER (AP) — Doughnuts were delivered Wednesday by drone to Denver's mayor and the city's police and fire departments in an event that provided a glimpse into what companies hope will be a quick, inexpensive way to get merchandise to customers.

Denver's LaMar's Donuts hired the company Drone Dispatch to deliver four boxes of doughnuts using piloted drones flown from parking lots within a block of the delivery targets.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock was outside city hall when a drone delivered doughnuts.

"This is exciting stuff and I think as we get ready for not only drones in the air, and get ready for autonomous vehicles, this is our future this is how we're going to become a more efficient 21st century nation, society quite frankly," Hancock said.

FAA officials said they were investigating to ensure the deliveries followed federal rules. 

The drones took off from parking lots near the Denver City and County Building, the police department, the fire department and an alleyway near a pedestrian mall.

Amazon and other companies have been testing autonomous drones for deliveries, while drone maker Flirtey last year began limited deliveries for 7-Eleven in Reno, Nevada.

The doughnuts were delivered as part of a week of celebrating a tradition that dates to World War I, where Salvation Army volunteers made doughnuts for soldiers on the front lines. National Doughnut Day is celebrated the first Friday of every June.