The Franklin County Fair was a great experience for TNT this year. We had been able to use our beloved Cool Bus and sponsor the fair last year, but the weather did not cooperate very well and Friday and Saturday, the two largest days of the fair, ended up having to be cancelled. We had a blast even in the two days we were able to participate in 2015, so we were bound and determined to give it our all this year.
A few months before this years’ fair, we held a team meeting to brainstorm how we could make the most out of it. By the time we were through, we decided to create a Scavenger Hunt for the children that would also generate prizes for the adults as well. We affectionately dubbed it, “The TNT Cool Car Chase” to play off the TNT Cool Bus, and made passports with places to be hole punched with special car hole punches. They would look for matchbox TNT green cars hidden with vendors throughout the fair, and as they found them, they would ask the vendor for a special vehicle safety question. Once they got it correct, they would get their passport hole punched. After five questions, they would bring their passport to our main booth, Victory Lane, and get a prize out of our custom made Piston Cup. There was a place on the passport for their parents’ information too, so they could be entered in to a drawing for a free oil change, every hour on the hour. Our team was excited, we were excited… and our customers were excited.
Throughout the fair, we had a blast, hands down. We were thanked hundreds of times by the community as they got on and off the shuttle, and our drivers got the best kick out of handing out “I’m Cool” Cool Bus stickers to any of the children that wanted one. Our girls that handled the Victory Lane booth told story after story of excited children, learning about the game and rushing to play and win a prize. They laughed at the squeals of excitement as each child came back to our booth, knowing they were about to collect a prize after all their hard work. We heard grateful thanks from so many winners as we gave away an oil change every hour on the hour… over twenty winners before the fair was over! A few even scheduled their oil change before the fair was even over. We were glad: that was the point, and what it was all about. Winning new customers and rewarding old ones, just glad to be a part of the community, and having a blast while growing our business… that was what the fair meant to us.
Saturday night, we called on as much of our team as we could to come help with the tear down and disassembly of our booths. As we all rolled up electrical cords, hauled hay bales away and tossed tires into vehicles to bring back to the shop, we laughed about so many things that had happened over the course of the four day event. It had been such a huge undertaking. And there we all were; tired, aching, dusty, dirty and sweaty, but knowing it was totally worthwhile. I looked at every one of our staff that showed up and gave their all, and each one had a smile that lit up the Saturday darkness and melted my sleep-deprived stress away. And that was Victory Lane for me.