After picking up Connie at the office we went to TPM Reprograhics on Assembly Street to get the display sign. TPM made a great sign for us to display at the event. It had all the vendors names who had contributed to the event along with all the attending reps. Thanks to TPM for this fantastic addition!
Now, on to Event Saturday!!! (April 12th, 2008)
If you do a search and look at last year's event I said that I doubted we could top that one. Well, guess what; we did, and by a LONG shot! This cigar event has grown from 7 people 3 1/2 years ago (October, 2004) to this year's attendance of 126!
Jim Massengale helped me set up again this year. We got to the Wild Hare around 10am. Not log after, Cheeze, aka Mark arrived to pitch in. Sondra Hankamer, the Miami Cigar rep met us there shortly thereafter She is an enthusiastic young lady that was a lot of fun! She even gave us our first cigar of the day. Here we are with that cigar:
The vendors were fantastic this year, too. We had 5 representatives of different cigar companies here. They were:
- Dylan Austin, Marketing, Camacho Cigars
- Carson Ross, Camacho Rep
- Nathan Saab (Nate), Oliva Rep
- Jeff Godfrey, Perdom Rep
- Sondra Hankamer, Miami Cigar Rep
Here's a list of the contributing companies and shops:
Smoking Lamp (Charleston, SC)
Vegas de Santiago
J. C. Newman
Lianos dos Palmas (Charleston, SC)
The Party Source (Bellevue, KY)
Reyes Family Cigars
Lil’ Brown Smoke Shop
Ginger Carnes (R&J Realtors)
Island Smoke Shop (Key Largo)
Armando RamosJJ Issacson
Local shops and contributors:
Maduro Room, 5175 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 14, Lexington, SC
The CIGAR Box, 2910 Rosewood Dr., Columbia, SC
Modern Age Tobacco, 1410 Colonial Life Blvd. Suite 200, West, Columbia, SC
Tobacco Merchant, 1220 Bower Parkway, #E4, Columbia, SC and 10136 Two Notch Rd., #4, Columbia, SC
Jordan Price, Manager of Tobacco Merchant, 10136 Two Notch Rd.
Ginger Carnes, Russell & Jeffcoat Realtors
The reps did a great job of talking up their products and passing out samples. They even found creative ways to raise more money for Sister Care!
This year, as in year's past, we also had a raffle. The raffle is split up into 2 separate charities. Our main charity is Sister Care, Inc., a shelter for battered women and their children. We also raffle off a Craftsman Bench Humidor which is donated by the J. C. Newman Co. on behalf of their charity, the Cigar Family Charitable Foundation, which benefits the people of The Dominican Republic. With the huge amount of prizes available the raffle for Sister Care went extremely well! And, as always, the Cigar Family humidor pulled in a nice sum. The totals for this year are:
- Sister Care, Inc.: $2335
- Cigar Family: $570
For a total of $2905!!!!
Each year we raise more money for these charities. The breakdown below shows the annual increases:
2006: Sister Care, $520; Cigar Family, $400
2007: Sister Care, $1055; Cigar Family, $550
2008: Sister Care, $2335; Cigar Family, $570
Thanks to all who have contributed over the years, as well as those who have donated items for the raffle!
Now, on to the pics...
With 126 people, the Wild Hare was bursting at the seams! We took over the entire bar this year. As a matter of fact, we had over 50 people here before noon! (we were suppose to start at noon) People from Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina primarily made up the group. The day went very smoothly. The various reps had 30 minutes to go over anything special about their products and run any "specials" to raise extra money for Sister Care. They were quite inventive with raising money. All the reps did great! Sister Care benefited from all their hard work.
The group picture was interesting! It was pretty much impossible to get a good pic of all 126 people. To show just how big the crowd was, here is my attempt at our group pic!As you can see, people are in front of other people...but believe me, all 126 are there...somewhere!
Now to some other pics. Here are pics of the crowd having a good time followed by some raffle winners:
Yours truely, working the door:
Dylan Austin (Camacho Marketing), me, Carson Ross (Camacho Rep)
Casey and Henry
Greg Tarlton and wife
Dylan being "Dylan" with Dale Sturgill (Dsturg)
Charlie Ruffalo, Connie, and me
Jim and Ginger
Joe, George, and Mark
Perdomo rep, Jeff Godfrey and Oliva rep, Nate Saab
Sondra Hankamer, Miami Cigar rep
The raffle items were amazing! Here are some of the bigger prize winners:
Arganese Cigars winner (no. 1)
Arganese Cigars winner (no. 2)
Arganese Cigars winner (no. 3)
The CIGAR Box (local Columbia, SC shop) winner:
Cigar Family humidor winner:
Avo Cigars winner:
Island Smoke Shop humidor winner:
JJ Issacson, custom humidor winner:
General Cigar winner:
Modern Age Tobacco (local Columbia, SC shop) humidor winner:
Oliva V's signed by Jose' Oliva winner:
Party Source (Bellevue, KY shop) winner (yes, that's me!)
Perdomo humidor winner: One of several Preferidos winners:
Reyes Cigars winner (no. 1)
Reyes Cigars winner (no. 2)
After all the raffle items were given out it was time for me to open my "special prize" that was put together by some of the loonies on the Social Cigar board. Tommyboy had mailed me a box. I opened it in front of everyone and found some "pills" that were suppose to put me out of my misery, along with some dog crap; REAL dog crap! I also received a big styrofoam package that contained previously frozen mountain oysters, aka hog nuts! The key word here is "previously" as they were room temperature and should not be left in the open air very long!!! Obviouusly these were presents from my GOOD friends! I'd hate to see what I'd get from my enemies! Here I am opening the mountain oysters:
Absent this year was Tedd Lepp.
We raised quite a bit of money for the 2 charities. I went to the bank and got 2 cashiers checks. I mailed off the Cigar Family check:
I always take the Sister Care check to them. Here I am with Tamika Sims, Volunteer Coordinator as she receives the check: