This is a year where V&R's profile was raised locally.
This site has become more than just a blog. It is seen as a media outlet for the local car community, although it has not fully covered it to its deepest levels. Yet, this year yielded some stories of interest, including the rise of a truck club, the collaboration between two divergent clubs to form a huge event, the local exotic car club's efforts towards engagement, the forming of a new club and the experiences – good or bad – of being in the car community itself.
If one element stands out as to what drives this continuing story, it would be the people. A community centered around the automobile has to have people dedicated to its enthusiasm. I have met some extraordinary people that embody its spirit to the fullest. They, too, are a huge part of this story.
It was a very good year inside of this story. One would end the story here and move on. However, this story is not going away any time soon.
As soon as I saw V&R's logotype on the back of a couple of t-shirts of a club and a lifestyle brand, I knew that it has been etched in for the time being. I still get requests to add V&R as a sponsor or partner with their club or organization.
Who are these clubs that currently partner with V&R? I figured it’s time to introduce you to these four awesome organizations that I had the privilege of attaching this site's name to.
INCARNATION AUTOMOTIVE: Once a producer of car events in the Twin Cities, ICN is looking to become more than that. Under Daniel Balto's leadership, along with a cadre of core members, the idea is to not just host key events around the calendar, but to facilitate philanthropic efforts to raise funds and awareness for a series of charities and causes that resonate with enthusiasts. This past year saw some successes – including being the new owner of the Vehicle of The Year Award. Next year, expect some awesome events forthcoming. V&R will definitely be there.
LIFESTYLE MN: To extend the collaborations and community ideals that MNNI and Lifted Trucks Minnesota, Andy Rushing, Marina Bryants and Derek Meyers got together to create a new company focused on continuing the spirit of collaboration in the car community. This will include events, apparel, sponsorships and fostering relationships with other car groups.
MNNI – MINNESOTA NISSAN INFINITI: Can a car club representing an OEM become a beacon in the car community. In the Twin Cities, the answer lies in a team of Nissan and Infiniti enthusiasts and their members. This led by a team of Rushing, Bryants, Joe De Leon, Katelyn Fiebiger and Cleve Jordan – all admins for the group ensuring complete enthusiasm for the products of Nissan North America. The club not only welcomes fellow Nissan and Infiniti owners and enthusiasts – they basically welcome everyone!
ZERO COMPOSURE: This was the club I helped start. Instead of focusing on automotive enthusiasm as a sole and primary focus, it adds the layer of being welcoming to those unwelcomed elsewhere in the car community. Because of this, members are able to connect with other via Facebook and events will take place – car-related or not. This is in fostering a community of car people that have other identities that coincide with enthusiasm.
V&R’s name has been associated with a couple of events last year – Dopery's Dope Days and InspireMN's Food for Fuel canned food drive. V&R is glad to be a part of these efforts by the car community to foster community and give back to the greater good.
If your club wants to partner with V&R, contact Randy Stern either through Facebook or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org – we also welcome sponsorships of this site, as well.
OOPS, did I say "sponsorships?" On the front page, there is an area with the word "Credits." That will soon change to "Partners." If you just want your logo and a link back to your website, let's talk! It may be moving closer to the top of the page pretty soon for better visibility.
As you can see, the story is not done. Not by a mile. There's more to come with V&R in 2016. Be ready to fasten your seatbelts and ride.