Yes, 10 beds. That’s how I chose to celebrate Hitch Studio’s 10th year in business — by giving back to the community of Brookings who has supported me and my small wedding planning, wedding invitation, and event decorating business for the last decade.
Hitch Studio turns 10 tomorrow (February 6, 2024)! In honor of that milestone, our team built 10 beds for 10 kids in Brookings so they don’t have to sleep on the floor. We had such an amazing group of Hitch volunteers and enough funding, that 10 beds actually turned into 15!
Sleep In Heavenly Peace, an organization whose mission is to build and deliver beds to children in need, believes that all kids deserve a safe, comfortable place to lay their heads. Their driving mission is: NO KID SLEEPS ON THE FLOOR IN OUR TOWN!® — and I couldn’t agree more. The Brookings chapter delivered 210 beds in 2023 (and over 2300 beds total in 5 ½ years!) across the state of South Dakota, but mostly to Brookings and a surrounding 40-mile radius. We were so happy and proud to contribute to that effort. In fact, 10 of our 15 beds had already been requested and were being delivered that following weekend. Heartbreaking. But also heart-filling.
I have the absolute best team and I can’t thank them enough. I certainly couldn’t run this business — or have done this volunteer effort — without them. Even significant others of the team came to support the cause. I’m a strong believer in giving back with our time, talent, and treasure, but this effort is by far the most impactful.
I realize I keep saying “I” — but it was never just me. Thank you to my family and the employees who helped, and thank you to Phil and Mike from SHP who organized the bed-building effort. I am so thankful that organizations like this exist in our town. If you were thinking of sending Hitch a birthday present, I would offer a suggestion to donate to Sleep In Heavenly Peace instead. Find them at shpbeds.org.
10 people I want to thank for my 10 years in business:
- Thank you to my husband. Jon, you are unwavering in your dedication to our family. Thank you for being an amazing partner in life and for listening to me no matter what the new topic is. Ha!
- Thank you to my parents and in-laws for supporting me in this venture. Mom and dad, I know it was an unconventional career path, but I can feel your love, cheers, and support every day. And Keith and Renae, thank you for watching, loving, and help raising our boys!
- Thank you to the community of Brookings. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), only 35% of businesses make it to the 10-year mark. This welcoming and supportive entrepreneurial community helped us achieve that. Thank you for embracing a small business and allowing us to grow here!
- Thank you to the management team of wedding planners. Natalie, Lyric, and Nat — I love you! My expectations of you are….high. Really high. And you blow right past them with your amazing service, positive attitudes, brilliant minds, solid work ethic, new ideas, big laughter, and pure awesomeness. You are constantly raising the bar in the ways we serve our couples and clients. Because you serve with your hearts — and your hearts are big!
- Thank you employees! Past, present, newest, and oldest. It is one of my greatest joys to mentor and lead a team of aspiring women. I want them to take everything they can possibly learn from their experience at Hitch Studio and grow into the best versions of themselves. We have a team of 40 employees right now, but Hitch has impacted over 100 employees in its lifetime and I couldn’t have made it to 10 years without you! Thank you to each and every one of you!
- Thank you Carrie for being the best business partner in the entire world for the first five years of Hitch Studio. We grew this business together, then parted ways to grow something even bigger, and you were a huge part of that. We started with a 600 sq. ft. office, one intern, and one car for hauling décor. We are a testament to truly starting small.
- Thank you to my Mastermind group. You’ve helped me realized things I couldn’t on my own and pushed me in good directions. It’s exciting to see your businesses grow too!
- Thank you to our Hitch Studio couples!! And to the parents who have hired us twice for multiple children getting married! Wow, we love wedding days. But our favorite part might be getting to know all of you during all the meetings. That’s sometimes 12-18 months of making friends with our couples and their families while we plan a big day! YOU are the reason we can celebrate 10 years. YOU and your trust in us is what keeps us going!
- Thank you to the Brookings Chamber of Commerce, BEDC, Downtown Brookings, and other organizations who support a healthy entrepreneurial culture. Small businesses like mine need your support and you’re always there offering it.
- Thank you, dear friends. I’ve worked a LOT of weekends in 10 years and I’m sorry if I’ve missed a life event for you. Thanks for sticking with me and being a friend when I needed one most. Thanks for the words of encouragement and love. There’s not much that a group of friends and a little travel can’t fix. Or a round of golf. Or a book club meeting. Or a rainy, windy beach in Savannah. Lol! Love you all!
10 years in a growing business and 41 candles on my cake. I have so much to be thankful for! My heart is full on this February day!