Fourth of July —
the Holiday Rush

by Sharmi Duncan

Located across the street from us, Galaxy Fireworks has been booming for weeks. It had been my impression that Galaxy was just a fireworks store, but as I watched the trucks and container loads of fireworks arrive over the last month, I began to realize that they are more than just a store. This little shop and warehouse is the hub, the main distributor, for all the fireworks tents that pop up every year. As I look out my window, I count more than 20 containers in one parking lot, and six more truckloads arrived today. Now that’s a lot of product! Watching them receive and ship inventory for the Fourth has brought me back to my days working at Cott Beverages.

Summertime is wicked busy for a soft drink and bottled water manufacturer. Memorial Day and the Fourth of July are insane. In the summer months it wasn’t unusual to be on the phone till 8:30 at night trying to find trucks to move loads. We competed with produce distributors for trucks. There was no shortage of freight in the summer months, and eventually we got all our loads booked. Missing a load was not an option. We had a little saying around the office: “We aren’t brain surgeons, it’s just sugar and water.” We said that to help bring a little levity to the situation, but in reality, as far as the grocery chains and c-stores were concerned, we may as well have been brain surgeons. They ordered a lot, and they expected delivery ASAP. The increase in volume just days before the Fourth was phenomenal.

Here at the brewery, things aren’t much different. Fourth of July is the biggest beer-drinking holiday of the year, and our distributors are cleaning us out. We are kegging beer today that will be picked up this afternoon. Now that’s a pretty quick turn, and a lot of beer—over 200 kegs to one distributor!

It’s not Christmas, but it sure is a busy holiday season! What seasons make the biggest impact on your business?

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