One day last December, a DQ® restaurant in Brownsville, Tenn., had an interesting random act of kindness occur that created a chain reaction that was both surprising and heart-warming to the DQ staff and the customers in the drive-thru lane. It all began with one man who, upon approaching the DQ employee at the drive-thru window, asked what the total of the bill was for the person in the car behind him, then paid that bill as well as his own.
When the employee told the person in the car behind that the bill was already paid for, that person asked for the total of the order for person in the car behind him and paid that bill. The same scenario continued, car after car, throughout the entire lunch rush. There were 20 cars in all involved in the extraordinary and unforgettable day.
When I think back to when I was a child, all of my holiday memories are happy ones. Wonderful meals, Christmas carols playing and family gatherings made for a very special time of year.
One of the traditions that I enjoyed the most was the search for the perfect Christmas tree. My grandparents lived on a 100-acre farm and it was a tradition to go into the forest to hunt for and cut down the perfect tree. The entire family would join – aunts, uncles, cousins – and we’d make a day of it.
Some of the grandkids would ride in the bucket of my grandfather’s tractor and others would be pulled in a sled behind a snowmobile. The cold weather and snow didn’t stop us; in fact it made it even more fun!
After the perfect trees were found, they’d be loaded into the tractor bucket and brought back to the farm house. My grandmother would have hot cocoa and fresh baked cookies waiting for us. Nothing warmed rosy cheeks and cold hands better than Grandma’s treats.
Now that I have my own children, the tradition of cutting down a tree is one that I have carried on. Although we no longer have a family farm, there are several tree farms in our area that offer a great experience. Its lots of fun to hop on the back of a tractor-pulled wagon and go out into the forest and find the perfect (or not-so-perfect) tree that will grace our home for the season. It’s that time of year for my family and I to go out and get our tree and I can hardly wait to make the trip.
What holiday traditions have you carried on since your childhood?
Quicker than you can say, “Jack Frost,” 2012 has flown by and the holidays are now upon us. Although this time of year brings about the hustle and bustle of gift giving for friends, family and acquaintances, it is always fun to take in the colorful lights, decorations, trimmings, music and celebrations of the season.
Dairy Queen® operators are also getting into the holiday spirit by not only offering delicious seasonal products such as the Candy Cane Chill Blizzard® Treat or Candy Cane Royal™ Shake, but also with festive, interactive window clings that allow customers to “RiDQulize” themselves at our locations. We have already seen and heard from a few customers who have taken photos of themselves interacting with these fun and unique displays and posted them to our Facebook page or “tweeted” about them.
In the spirit of the holidays, we’d love to have more of our raving fans shoot and post their “RiDQulized” photos to either our DQ Facebook (Facebook.com/DairyQueen), Twitter (@DairyQueen#RiDQulize) or Instagram (RiDQlize) pages. Have fun, be merry, be creative and who knows, Santa might just give you a something a little extra in your stocking this year.
So what are you waiting for? Go get your holiday shopping done and stop by your local DQ store to “RiDQulize” yourself before the holidays pass you by.
From all of us to all of you, have a safe and cheerful holiday season!
Sometimes it’s hard to choose. Sometimes each of the options is so attractive… so unique in its appeal that making a decision is downright impossible. For example, choosing between a Chicken Strip Basket and a GrillBurger™ Combo Meal is hard. Or choosing between the Candy Cane Chill Blizzard® Treat (December’s Blizzard of the Month) and the limited-time-only Candy Cane Royal Shake—that’s REALLY hard.
Which makes me a little bit glad that I wasn’t a part of the Dairy Queen® system back in 1983, when the DQ® uniform catalog offered these store employee ensembles in both “Standard” and “Western” versions:
The best and most rewarding part of my job is the work I do with Children’s Miracle Network®, a charity that raises funds for 170 nonprofit children’s hospitals across North America. The Dairy Queen® system has been a partner with Children’s Miracle Network® for over 29 years raising over $91 million in that time for sick and injured children.
Each year I am actively involved in the planning and executing of the DQ® annual Miracle Treat Day activities and other fundraising initiatives throughout the year. I always knew how important fundraising for hospitals was, but it wasn’t until last year when I needed the help of a children’s hospital that it really hit home.
In July 2011, my son, Oliver, was born at McMaster Children’s Hospital in Hamilton, Ontario, a Children’s Miracle Network® member hospital. Weighing in at nine pounds, 12 ounces, Oliver was a full-term, seemingly healthy baby, and my husband and I were overjoyed with his arrival. On his third day in the world, we were getting ready to go home when a nurse came into my hospital room without Oliver in tow and told us to sit down. Our baby had an unexplained fever, which is taken very seriously in newborns, and had been taken to the Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
I felt like the ground had fallen out from under my feet and that my heart had been ripped out of my chest. Overcome with fear, tears spilled down my face and I felt incredibly helpless. Seeing Oliver in an incubator with tubes and wires everywhere was so frightening. All I wanted to do was to hold him and take him home, but I wasn’t allowed to. It was heart-wrenching.
Terms like dehydration, lumbar puncture and intense antibiotic treatment swirled around for the next couple of days and Oliver was cared for by a team of incredible nurses and doctors. I’m very happy to report that after 48 hours of intense round-the-clock care, Oliver was released to us with a clean bill of health. Those two days were the longest and most terrifying of my life, but I was incredibly comforted knowing that he was in the best possible hands.
We were very lucky that our baby boy wasn’t seriously ill. My husband and I saw other tiny babies in the NICU who had been there for days, weeks or even months. I’m sure that some of them never left. After this experience, my work with Children’s Miracle Network has even deeper meaning to me. I hope that we never need the hospital again, but if we do, I am comforted to know that it is there.
For more information or to donate to your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, please visit:
It’s the end of October in Minnesota so weekends are for raking leaves, visiting haunted houses and spending as much time as possible outside before the snow starts falling. Last Saturday I went to a Pumpkin Patch Fall Festival with a friend of mine. We played mini golf, jumped onto a hay ride, picked out a pumpkin and then ordered some nachos and root beer floats from the tiny little malt shop at the park.
Unfortunately, the young adults working the food and ice cream counter were very slow. After ordering your items, they would write the order down on a post-it and give it to someone in the prep area. The customer would pay and then stand there and wait, and wait, and wait. Many of the customers looked irritated at the wait times.
I couldn’t help overhearing what one woman said to her small son as they walked into the malt shop. “Come on honey, let’s go to the local DQ® store instead.” And without a second thought, the little boy turned around and followed his mom out to the car.
Even in the midst of a Fall Festival, with hay rides and pumpkins and mini golf, the perfect ending for that mother and son was a trip to the DQ store.
Just a few months ago, a DQ® customer named Carrissa stopped into the Bloomington, Minn. DQ Grill & Chill® restaurant with her boyfriend. While they normally use the drive-thru lane, this time she parked and went into the location instead. While waiting for her food, Carrissa was enjoying the heritage photo collection on the wall when she suddenly realized there was a photo of herself, her brother Todd, and their friend Bubba from more than 30 years ago! They had been invited to the corporate headquarters in October 1979 for a promotional photo shoot of DQ products. What a surprise!
Everyone is thrilled it is back-to-school time again…
Businesses have sales – and lots of them! Deals for everyone.
Kids 5 to 18– hey! You get to see your buddies again, and everyone loves homework! For college kids – you’re off on your own, tasting independence (kind of), learning amazing things and nearing the point when you can start the rest of your life! Parents… The kids are at school or college!
OK. I know in reality not everyone is thrilled…not even all parents. In my family we have only one college…no more high school, no more elementary school…. It’s such a strange place to be – though we all seem to be adjusting just fine to the changes. I did find myself wandering the aisles of the school supplies at stores wondering if there might just be something we need this year….
Do you remember the first time you didn’t have to go back to school and September rolled around?
I love all four seasons and up here in Minnesota, summer always seems to be the briefest… poof! It’s gone.
We have a lovely patio in the front of our house – perfect for entertaining, or impromptu gatherings. Dilly® Bars, Buster Bars®, No Sugar Added Bars…and DQ Cakes and Blizzard® Cakes… any of these treats turn a regular gathering into a party. I love the cakes and the Dilly Bars, personally, and am always surprised at how quickly the Buster Bars go when there is a choice.
When our kids were little and playing on ball teams, the DQ treats we’d bring for end of game or end of season parties were always a huge hit – and less work for me!