Giving Away $25,000 Is Fun

October 12, 2015

A couple of weeks ago, Alli wrote about a New York City media day we organized to help launch the Small Business Revolution documentary. Fast Horse has been working on this Small Business Revolution project since its inception, and the launch of the documentary is a major milestone as we approach the end of this incredible year-long project.

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of activity with our friends at Deluxe Corporation. The NYC media tour, a satellite media tour from Minneapolis (photo above), and a huge documentary premiere party where, among other things, Gov. Dayton proclaimed Sept. 30, 2015, to be Small Business Day in Minnesota, in honor of Deluxe and the Small Business Revolution.

On Sept. 29, though, I took part is a less glitzy — but no less remarkable — event that was probably the most fun I’ve ever had on the job. Throughout the year, the Small Business Revolution has been collecting nominations for fantastic small businesses worthy of a $25,000 prize to give a boost to their business. On the 29th, we bestowed the first of four $25,000 prizes to a pair of women who run a business called Minnesota Nice Spice.

But first, we lied to them.

My colleague Tara, who coordinated the surprise moment, told the women Fast Horse would be stopping by to interview them on camera for a post for this very blog. This way, we made sure they’d be present and camera-ready when we stopped by with two executives from Deluxe, “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec, three TV news cameras, our own video and photo equipment and a giant $25,000 check.


Throughout the year, Minnesota Nice Spice had been nominated dozens of times, and it’s clear why. They have such a great story — hard work, great products, organic ingredients, supporting important causes — and they’re such sweet people. When we ambushed them with cameras and money, Debb and Lucy were jumping for joy. And when we were getting ready to leave 45 minutes later, they were still jumping for joy and dabbing moist eyes. As we left, one of our clients said, “My cheeks hurt!”

Any time you’re smiling and laughing that much, that’s a good day. Giving away $25,000 is a blast. And we get to do it three more times!

Here’s one of several local news stories about the great surprise moment: