My Creative Director, James Arnett, sent me a message earlier today asking, “can I get a soundbite-y quote from each of y'all for our Holiday Press Release? Anything at all -- excitement about holiday wares, cool opportunities to design or blow, what a great year we've had, something about Black Friday, etc.”
To answer James’ question, I am excited about so many things happening at Blenko! Those who are lifetime Blenko fans and followers know that we have experienced much hardship over the last several years. I’ll spare our new friends the details but the important thing is that Blenko Glass Company is now in the best position it has been in for at least 20 years. I feel like I say this every year but it really is true – and continues to get true-er every day!
Those who work closely with me know that I spend most of my time behind a computer monitor. (You would be amazed at the amount of Blenko work that is done online!)
That being said, when I'm up and about walking around campus, I am filled with excitement at the things I pass during my rounds.
Besides the obvious improvements such as furnaces and facility upgrades (which are amazing, don't get me wrong!), the good stuff is in the intangibles.
New employees, new SKILLED employees, cleanliness, respect, leadership and ownership, intellect and creativity, passion. These are a few of the things I see now every day that were not entirely present when I first started working with Blenko in 2017.
I see professional trainers who are mentoring the next generation of glassworkers in West Virginia, I see passionate and loyal Directors and Supervisors leading with care and expertise, and I see hard working and dedicated employees honing their craft and producing some of the most beautiful handmade products that come out of Appalachia.
Again, as I look back over the past few years, I cannot believe how far we’ve come. Another year basically gone, each passing faster and faster. With only 30-some working days left in the year, we enter the calm before the storm known as “the days before Black Friday” and prepare ourselves for the final push through Christmas.
I am thankful for many things. Of course, my wife, friends and family, pets…the usual. This year I am especially thankful for my employees and for YOU! The person reading this who is an integral part of our ever-growing and ever-supportive base of customers and patrons.
We look forward to a busy and exciting holiday season and an even MORE exciting 2024. There are so many possibilities and new opportunities on the horizon for Blenko Glass Company and I am grateful for the opportunity to be a small cog in such a big machine.
Anyway, thanks for taking the time to read my open letter. I hope to post more as things settle down into a regularity at Blenko so stay tuned! James may even let me tease new products in these notes!
Oh yeah, and check out the new Hard Candy and Snow Bowls we released for the holidays! They’re pretty cool! Get one now before Black Friday wipes us clean! Also, buy a 384 Water Bottle for all your friends and family. It’s a classic gift that will last a lifetime.
Stay safe and have a wonderful Thanksgiving,
Bryson Cutler, VP
Blenko Glass Company