January and February

I finally have a chance to sit down at the computer, so I'll give you a recap of the current off season.
As we were wrapping up one of my best race seasons ever, Melissa and I discussed the options of
venturing into the world of Todd Stillwell Racing merchandise. In the beginning, we were going to do
it, then weren't, then we were, then we weren't and then finally, our ideas were full steam ahead.  By
this time we had no product, no show material and a race car that was in pieces and only a few
weeks till our first major show. With the help of family and friends, things came together with only
minutes to spare in true Stillwell spirit. The first thing after ordering our toy cars was to finish
assembling the race car and assembling all the pieces to have a nice looking show space. Two
weeks to go, we have no toys and no t-shirts but on the brighter side the dragster is together and
running and our booth space pieces are finished. By this time, my stress level is above and beyond
the maximum allowable level. With less than a week to leave for my first show, the Indianapolis World
of Wheels AutoRama, I finally get my first load of toy cars and get approval from one of my sponsors
to purchase our t-shirts. Now that we have the toys, we have to decal them and get the trailer and
motorhome loaded. On the day before I am to leave, the t-shirts are finished and I must say they are
awesome. On February 12, 2009, I left for Indianapolis for our first show. I love it when a plan comes
together. I got everything unloaded and Melissa arrived shortly after and we finished setting up our
booth and display.           
Friday started early with the high school program which lead right into the night's main show. As the
spectators rolled in, they got a chance to check out some of the areas most awesome show
vehicles. In our booth, they were treated to the chance to sit in a real working race car that I allowed
them to be apart of. Both young and old jumped at the chance and many left with a souvenir toy car
or t-shirt. Saturday was even busier with several hundred people sitting in the car. I wish you could
bottle up the look on a young kids face when he leaves with a autographed toy or shirt. One kid,
especially, had gotten 40 dollars for his good grades and was so excited to get his very own toy
dragster and t-shirt that was autographed after sitting in my race car. My brother, Lance his wife,
Shelly and their two boys, Corey and Deven came by to help for a while. Corey, Lance's oldest boy
stayed and helped for the rest of the weekend  
Sunday was the last day of the show and we had good sales and even had a couple of celebrities sit
in the race car including Boomer, the Indiana Pacers mascot and the Pink Panther. This weekend
came to a successful ending after a lot of hard work and dedication and looked forward to our next
trip which is the Carl Casper Auto Show in Louisville KY the following week.
We arrived home from Indy late Sunday night and Monday morning I received my second load
of toy cars, I applied decals to the cars that we needed for the Carl Casper Auto Show in
Louisville, KY and loaded them up getting ready to leave on Wednesday. We set up our booth
and display on Thursday and started the show on Friday morning beginning with the high
school portion and after a short break, we were back for the Friday evening show. I could tell
right away that this was a bigger event with the amount of people that came through but the
best was yet to come. On Saturday, we were at the show for over 12 hours and we had a line of
spectators for nearly the entire program that we estimated to be close to 1000 people sitting in
the race car and that was good because we were able to sell a lot of items. My son, Dylan had a
good time, he was able to see some of his hero's and favorite villains including the Hulk, Iron
man, Darth Vader and a Storm Trooper.  We wrapped up Sunday evening tired and ready to
get home but considered this to be another successful event.