I did it! Taste of Chicago 2014
Two months ago I was given the assignment to plan the Taste of Chicago for Mariano’s from start to finish, while still being a full time Merchandising Manager opening Ravenswood and then a full time Assistant Manager opening Bucktown. Looking back, it was a lot; but honestly there wasn’t anytime to doubt myself or question if I could do it.
I’ve always had the motto, crush or be crushed. I really believe having a can-do, I can do or learn anything attitude is the key to success. And although I had a couple of close call, nearly panic attack moments, I still managed to nearly sell more watermelon slices in one day (11,000 Sunday) then Dominick’s did in their 5 days total last year (12,000).
It was grueling- 14 days on (a few of them 15,17 hour days), 20 miles alone walked on the last day, cutting bins of watermelons like a machine with a machete, torrential down pours on Saturday while unloading trucks with lift gates and pallet jacks- but I managed. I was proud that our chocolate dipped frozen bananas and Italian sausage sandwiches were named best new menu items at the taste by Time Out Chicago and I even managed to make a cameo on ABC7 news
But the best feeling was being open for business the first day and just knowing I did it. And no one held my hand and I didn’t completely lose it and I really did it all by myself (with the help of some really great mentors, friends and resources). It has been hands down my greatest accomplishment to date and I just have a great sense of pride for myself, my work and what I’m capable of accomplishing.