We were able to go to California to visit our friends because Chris was going to be out there working. There was a store grand opening in Moreno Valley that he was helping with Food Distribution. This was very near our old store, home and friends so we all went along.
The weekend before a store in California opens, Food Distribution is done. This serves several purposes out there. Here, on the East coast they mostly hand out coupons for free food for the grand opening and everybody LOVES it. Back in 2004 when we were out there for the first freestanding store openings ( the mall stores had been there for 20+ years) no one knew what the heck Chick-fil-A was, let alone what the BOG was for. You know...the Be Our Guest card, usually for a free Chicken sandwich. Food Distribution was created so we could get the taste of the food in the people's mouths and a free coupon to come back for the opening. How many times have you gotten coupons for food in the mail and thrown them away b/c you have never heard of the restaurant? Since we didn't want this to happen we would hand out 10,000 Chick-fil-A original sandwiches the Friday and Saturday before the store opened. This way we could get people hooked and excited about their coupon!
Things have changed a lot since 2004 and MANY more people know what to expect now. They even know it is a food restaurant and not a girls clothing store...no kidding. I am sure the operators out there meet new people everyday trying the food for the first time. Chick a fil... Chick fil a (short a)... just some of the common pronunciations we would here. Chick a fil? Come on people...the "a" is at the END of the word. No, we are not a mom and pop restaurant. No, we do not sell whole chickens. No fish on the menu. Sweet tea is made with tea and SUGAR...and my favorite: "where are you from...Texas?" Nope! Georgia..."where is that?"...you are killing me people! Fun times.
It will always be neat to say we were part of the West Coast Expansion with Chick-fil-A. It was such an honor to represent the Cathy family and the restaurant business while there for 3 years. We made many life long friends, both in the community and in the company. It was really neat to share good southern hospitality in a restaurant and to introduce people to the best chicken sandwich ever! We had multiple opportunities to share the Corporate Purpose of the company (To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A) and the reasons we are closed on Sunday. Yes, the company is really founded on biblical principles and no we the owner/operators are not Mormon. I guess we lived close to Utah and they associated all the "good" the restaurant and company did with Mormons? I just wish the boys would remember being a part of it all. I was pregnant with them when we opened the store in Corona, CA (though we didn't know it at the time)...the blue bows announcing their arrival hung on the store doors, they dressed as cows on cow appreciation day and made it in the local paper...such fun memories.
Watching daddy pass out the famous Chicken sandwiches...they loved the fact that he had a cow on his shirt! They loved watching the big trucks go by even more. Funny thing is, out there a big jacked up truck does not = redneck...it is usually some rich kid with too much of mommy and daddy's money...very preppy and hip...not hunting and such.
Sampling some of the food and supporting their two favorite things. Chick-fil-A and Clemson!
What a fitting shirt for the occasion...although it really means the Gamecocks...but people out there have never heard of Clemson, let alone the Gamecocks:)
What a beautiful shoe! Supporting their team from head to toe!