Category Archives: Fundraising
Learning as we go…
Hello, to all my waffle friends, fans, and new visitors! As I write this, I am getting ready to wrap up my first season with our new food trailer. It has been a wonderful, hard, hot, and meaningful experience as we get used to working from a trailer and cooking to order! Trying new recipes and coming up with new and fun items has been a blast, and I’m still brainstorming new ideas all the time!
For those of you who came out to support us in our first year, we want to say a big THANK YOU! We really appreciate everyone’s patience and willingness to wait as we worked out bugs and kinks in our ordering system. We have it down MUCH better than we did at the beginning of the season and during the down time, I will be experimenting with ways to step it up even more.
To all of the neighborhoods associations that had us out, again…THANK YOU! You are the main thing that has kept us afloat this year during the pandemic! Thank goodness for being able to socially distance with an outdoor trailer! And while I’m at it…thank you to Morrie Enders at Lincoln Community Playhouse for letting us kick off our season there back in April. We may be coming back in October for an encore performance! Stay tuned here or on my Facebook page for the schedule!
Speaking of upcoming schedules, here is one quick announcement: We will be serving at Home Depot South on September 23rd and 24th from 830am-730pm! Tell your friends and neighbors!
To be completely honest, he pandemic hit The Waffleman really hard. I had 6 bookings at the end of March, plus 12 bookings in April that all vanished entirely when the pandemic hit. All of my May graduation parties postponed (though thankfully, only one cancelled). So in April and May, the food trailer became our sole source of operating. Thankfully about that time, many Facebook and social media groups popped up in support of local small business. So a thank you to those moderators who sent customers to me and other small businesses in an effort to keep us afloat.
We will tuck the food trailer away for the season after Halloween weekend at the end of October, which means that without the fundraisers I would usually be doing, we will “go dark,” from November through February.
How can you help? Hire me for a “Waffleman Express” event this winter! I will come feed your office or small group an all you can eat waffle meal! When the “large group restrictions,” lift, we will be back on it and ready for fundraisers and fun!
The Current Craziness
Many people have asked me about the current pandemic and whether I see it affecting my business. When a national emergency like this comes along, it makes everyone step back and take a look at many aspects of their lives. All I can tell you is: this is big. Really big.
For those of us who have been around for a while, this will be to the younger generation their 9/11, their Kennedy Assassination, and their Great Depression. The kind of event they will be telling their kids and grand-kids alike.
But when major tragedies like this happen, I think of Mister Rogers who once told one of his viewers: “In times of tragedy, look for the helpers. The police, the doctors, the fire fighters, even regular people will step up to help out.”
That is what is so great about our state: the helpers. Our University Medical Center prepared themselves when news first broke and said: “Send us the sick. We are ready.” Just like we did with SARS and Ebola. Our state tends to stick together to make it through tough times. We proved it with the floods, and we will prove it again.
So remember to be kind to each other as always. When things return to normal, help those who are deeply affected by this turn of events by going out to eat, seeing a live show, and going to a sporting event. It will take time for all of us to recoup our losses from this pandemic. We may never fully recoup in fact. But we will perservere.
So wash your hands, and try to donate extra to your local food banks and pantries. Remember…poor people can’t afford to stock up and will need our help in the coming weeks more than ever.
Long time, no see!
Being The Waffleman has many, many perks. As I have stated before, one of my favorites is getting to travel throughout our great state and meeting all of the great people it has to offer.
Attached to this post are just a few of the pictures I have taken throughout the year of people enjoying and eating my waffles, as well as some of the many volunteers who helped to serve them.
Having a Waffleman event means community. More than the average fundraiser and more than just eating, people in the local community or school rally around a cause and have a fun time raising money to support a group that gives back in their own community.
Whether big town or small, the results are undeniable. People love when The Waffleman comes to town! Just last week, I was in Omaha at an elementary school. As I was backing in, their after-school program was out on the playground. The screams of “Waffleman!! WAFFLEMAN!! The Waffleman’s here!” from the kids warmed my heart.
It made me feel like a Beatle or Elvis Presley, even for just a moment…
And so we commence…
May is here! And I am way behind in updating my website! May brings us a lot of things…flowers, green trees (here in Nebraska anyway) and the end of school. For many families as well as The Waffleman, it brings graduation season.
It has always struck me that graduation ceremonies are usually called “commencement.” As you will often hear during this time of year, the word “commence,” means to begin. Personally, I like many of the synonyms that I found in the thesaurus: get going, launch, initiate, get cracking, kick off, and hit the ground running. Even though it is the ending of a major portion of your life (schooling), it really is a start of something much bigger!
The most difficult thing to keep in mind before life sweeps you up is to make time for the important things. Along with your job or schooling, make sure you make time to relax, enjoy family time, and volunteer any place you can. Dividing your life into equal portions is probably the toughest thing you will have to face. And remember to keep that “attitude of gratitude.” Be thankful for everyone who is in your life for whatever reason they may be there. I am personally really thankful for all of my friends and family and also for all of the wonderful organizations who have booked me again or who have tried me out for the first time. You are the reason I love my work!
So whatever the next step of your personal journey is, get out, get your feet wet, start the ball rolling, and jump into the next step with as much enthusiasm as you can muster!
New year, new look, new digs!
On September 1st, I celebrated my 1 year anniversary taking over as The Waffleman from original Waffleman Doug McCallum. It has been a great year and I have had some time to reflect on all of YOU who have made the transition go smoothly and who have kept the Waffleman tradition alive!
The best part about being The Waffleman is getting to travel this great state of ours and meeting some of the best people Nebraska has to offer. Helping worthy causes raise money is a large part of what I do, but I have learned over the past year that it certainly isn’t all I do.
Throwing a waffle feed brings a sense of community to the people who sponsor and attend. In these days of extreme busy-ness, it is harder and harder to get people to connect with each other. Usually, we (including myself) are too busy running from one thing to another to enjoy each others company. A Waffleman event brings people together over good old comfort food to enjoy each other’s company and take just a little time away from their phones, their work, and their worries.
A few things are changing in the upcoming year (mostly cosmetic). I have re-painted the waffle tables and outfitted them with my new logo and caricature. I also have a new storefront! You can come and see me at 1232 High Street, Suite 2 in Lincoln! Although I am usually only there by appointment, if the lights are on, feel free to stop in and say “Hi!”
Check out the pictures of my newly outfitted tables and the front window of my new store!