Racing to the weekend


4:35 p.m. ET

Running at a fast pace…that is how I would describe the past week. At this point, three days before Hall of Fame Weekend starts on Friday, everything is urgent and a priority. All of the planning over the past eight months is coming together. We are in really good shape. The vendors have shipped most of their product in on time and everything is out and on the floor and in the tents. Everyone is working very long hours into the nights and through the weekends.

It reminds me of my days at the Eagles before our first regular season game. The difference is that Hall of Fame Weekend is much bigger than a regular season football game. The other big difference from a regular season football game is that at the Pro Football Hall of Fame we have people coming to support many teams instead of just one or two.We have to be prepared for local fans, fans from the teams playing, and all the fans from the teams of players who are being inducted. So this year our focus is on the Bills (playing in the game and Bruce Smith and Ralph Wilson Jr. are being inducted), Titans (playing in the game), Steelers (Rod Woodson & local because Pittsburgh is less than two hours away), Vikings (Randall McDaniel), Chiefs (Derrick Thomas) and Cowboys (Bob Hayes). The “local” presence also consists of the Browns (less than an hour away), Bengals (4 hours), Colts (5 hours), Bears (6 hours), Eagles (6 ½ hours), Redskins (7 hours) and Giants & Jets (7-8 hours). And then there is all of the other 32 teams fans who we have to be prepared for.

We also are coordinating 15 vendors who are coming in for the weekend to promote and sell their product for us. Each vendor will have a 10x10-10x30 tent within a large 5,00-square-foot tent. We have a wide variety of vendors coming in which will supplement our product we already carry here in our store and in our tents. Here are the vendors and some of the things they sell (all of these products are NFL licensed and we carry in every NFL teams): Baseline Products (couches, recliners & storage units), Fathead (player wall hangings), Highland Mint (collectible coins, photos & prints), Hunter Manufacturing (glassware products, games and pet clothing), Glory Days Fantasy Football (fantasy football game), Image Sportswear (Hall of Fame player t-shirts), LogoArt (jewelry and bracelets), Mounted Memories (autographed and collectible items), MVP Pics (personalizes team photographs), Past Time Sports (old footballs and helmets), Riddell (team helmets), Sports Images (football trading cards), Vineyard Vines (ties and tote bags), Wilson (footballs), and Winning Streak Sports (vintage pennants).

Back to the race….it is going to be a long night!!

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