If there is one thing I can count on, it is entering a contest and not winning. I can't tell you how many times I have completed entry forms and purchased raffle tickets only to leave the event disappointed after the last prize was given out.
I never win anything.
That all changed a couple of weeks ago.
Jim and I are members of Good Sam Club; we are also members of Camping World's President's Club. Turns out that Good Sam is now in a close partnership with Camping World. Camping World bought out an RV dealership in Jacksonville last summer, and it finally celebrated its grand opening and its collaboration with Good Sam Club with an open house on a Friday evening.
We received an invitation and decided to go. We didn't know there would be prizes. We did know there would be food (some of which was GF) and probably some items we needed on sale. So, we decided to brave the rainy weather and the rush-hour traffic (both of which Jim complained about on the way to the event) to make the drive down to Camping World on Beach Blvd., about a 20-minute drive from our house.
When we got there, we were told there would be a drawing at 6 p.m. Jim put his invitation in the box and we went back to try to chocolate-covered strawberries, melon, and lettuce chicken wraps. We also found a Fantastic Fan we needed to buy to replace the one that had died in our RV kitchen. It was the only one in stock, so Jim started lugging it around.
Around 5:45 we thought about leaving, but then decided that maybe (if we were lucky) we might win a gift certificate that could knock off a few dollars on the fan. So we decided to wait for the drawing.
Imagine our surprise when the CEO of Good Sam and Camping World, Marcus Lemonis, started drawing names and giving out very generous prizes--like $500 shopping sprees. He also asked winners what they were shopping for--and then gave them their wish-list!
Jim and I looked at each other and decided that if (and it was a really big if) our name were called we would ask for the fan and a satellite dish, something we have been drooling over for a while.
About 10 minutes later, our name was called! (Actually, Jim's name, but I went up to get the prize.) Marcus asked what we wanted, teased me when I told him "a Fantastic Fan and a satellite dish" and then asked, "A high-end dish? An in-motion dish?" I had no idea what that was, but I looked at Jim, who was grinning ear-to-ear and nodding so hard his head almost fell off. I responded, "Sounds good to me!"
And with that, he gave us both items--top of the line--with installation included. Our prize was valued at more than $2,900.
I guess I can't say that I've never won anything anymore. But what I can say is, "Thank you, Marcus. We really do appreciate your generosity!"
That little trip in the rain really paid off. I guess the moral is: Always go to a retailer's open house. You never know what will happen.
Until next time,
Your (not quite as) Reluctant RoVer,
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