At various points during our summer, we’ve talked about a PJP booth selling pie at all sorts of venues and local events. Each time we started to complete a vendor application, apprehension would set in. We would talk ourselves out of committing to a 10×10 space somewhere on the panic that falls between the worry that NO ONE would purchase a pie (leaving us with hundreds of pies and broken dreams) and the worry that EVERYONE would purchase a pie (leaving us unable to supply the demand and dashed expectations).
Over the course of the last few months, we’ve talked about the Memorial Day Air Show, the Roots, Blues, and BBQ festival, and Holiday Mart in Kansas City. The air show fell five weeks after our opening day and we could barely figure out how to stock our store, much less bake, transport, and sell hundreds of pie in the early summer heat on a tarmac. The Roots, Blues, and BBQ was compelling, but expensive. At an average investment of $1,000 to even sit in our booth at the site, we psyched ourselves out that enough music loving festival-goers would want pie while they rocked out to Jason Isbell. And Holiday Mart in Kansas City? Well, if you’ve been there, you know that it is a shopping extravaganza and we worried one of us couldn’t man the booth while the other shopped…also, getting pies from PJP Buttonwood to Bartle Hall presented logistical issues that we couldn’t answer (this is why we need a PJP Logistics, by the way). All good opportunities that we talked ourselves out of for various reasons, but mainly because staying at our home base PJP Buttonwood is terribly more comfortable than taking the PJP show on the road.
All that said, we decided today to shove ourselves right out of our comfort zone before we become content with the status quo. And that is why we turned in our application for a booth at this November’s King’s Daughters Holiday Festival in Columbia (http://kdholidayfestival.com). If you’ve learned anything about us at this point, you know we usually go with the path of least resistance. In this case, the King’s Daughters Holiday Festival is something we both love to shop at each fall. We can rent a booth for $350, thereby decreasing our “we MUST sell xxxx pies to break even” margin. PJP Buttonwood is 5.8 miles away, so extra stock becomes much more feasible. Also, it gives us one final opportunity to take Thanksgiving pie orders. And given our shopping history, we know that if no one buys pie, well, we will have enough shopping opportunity to distract ourselves from all the shame.
As with all positives, there are negatives. The festival is the weekend immediately prior to Thanksgiving. We don’t pre-bake and freeze anything, so it isn’t that the weekend was planned for baking…but it was planned for mentally freaking out about how we are going to make 2,000 pies during Thanksgiving week. And considering we will be baking a lot of pie for the festival in hopes of great sales, we will roll into our busiest week of the year with little physical and emotional reserves. I hereby lay odds that one, or both of us, cries at some point over the weekend.
We have no idea what to expect. But we know the road to world pie domination is paved with taking risks that hopefully move us forward. Or maybe we just spent too much time looking at inspirational quotes on Pinterest.