October 10, 2013 marks my 8 year anniversary with Bass Pro. I was one of the originals, I was, what we lovingly refer to as, the hard hat crew! I remember every bit of the process. The three interviews, meeting at the hotel across the street for Orientation and the anticipation of getting into the building.
Then the day came when we met in the parking lot of the store and we were going to be allowed in. You could literally feel the excitement in the air. We each were handed our own hard hats and we proceeded up the back fire escape stairs. Even though everything was still in progress building the inside, heavy equipment everywhere, canvases draped here and there, the noise, debris it was a sight to behold. We formed teams and put this store together! One of my favorite memories of opening day, hearing an employee say on the radio, "For the love of God, somebody please help me!" I still chuckle to this day over that!
I have worn many "hats" here at store 29. I started off as a part time employee in the Footwear dept and went to full time.I became the stocker and was in charge of the WMANs.. Then I went to the Receiving dept and became a stocker. Early mornings, unloading trucks and working freight. I thrived on this. Next came the fishing dept where i was in charge of all the RAID and merchandising. Loved this dept and all that it held. Merchandizers dream and/or nightmare. Was a challenge to see where I could fit things and move things around. Then came Marine Lead. This is the position that I still hold to this day.
I've been lucky enough to help 5 stores set up their footwear depts, travel to Destin for the Fishing/Marine University and am signed up to be able to travel again. I have experienced many lasting friendships here, friends illnesses, births, deaths and weddings. This is a family here at store 29! Great store manager, who I wouldnt trade for the world, and an excellent management staff. I am a long way from any of my family and the people here have taken my kids and I under their wing. I am grateful to be part of this store and all that it holds. Heres to many more anniversaries to myself and the others of the "Hard Hat Crew"!