Shara Stacks AR
Wal-Mart Shareholders Benefits I am lucky enough to live in the are of the hometown offices of Wal-Mart. And, yes I say lucky because the Walton Family has given back to my area tenfold and employs a huge amount of people in the area. Because the home Offices are located here, the annual Shareholders Meeting is held here every year at the University of Arkansas campus. Celebrities of all genres are brought in to perform and entertain at the Shareholders Meeting. All of the Vendors from all over the united States come and hand out freebies. There is a huge balloon festival featuring hot air balloons that range from a loaf of Wonder Bread to Tony the Tiger. It is a wild and wonderful week for the Shareholders. I suppose I should start off by saying that in order to be a Shareholder you must be a Wal-Mart associate OR own stock in the company. My husband I decided to purchase a few shares of stock each. Not only is it a wise investment, it nets tickets to all of the events free of charge. There is a huge Vendor Fair that is on Campus and is only open to Shareholders. I was unable to attend the big one on campus due to other obligations, but I was able to attend the vendor fair at my local Wal-Mart which is free and open to the public. Anyone can come and rake in the freebies. In my picture you will see the freebies we netted in three days - and only for about one hour each day. The picture does not include the food we ate while we were there - Spam, Frescetta Pizza, Blue Bunny Ice Cream, Breyer’s Ice cream, Diamond Ice Tea, Hiland Dairy Milk, Beef Jerky, Ballpark Grillmaster Hot dogs, Mrs. Baird’s bread and more that I am not even remembering! In the photo you will see numerous trial size items, full sized products, novelties and Health and Beauty Care items that we received. We received beef sticks, a full sized Turkey Jerky, Mrs. Baird’s fruit pies, Chips Delux cookies, Clif bars, Nature’s Valley Granola Bars, Bimbo Snack Cakes, Chex Mix, S’Mores Cereal, Tony’s Chachere’s Seasoning packets, Colgate Toothpaste, Playtex tampons, Irish Spring Soap, Speed Stick, Adidas Active Deodorant, Lady Speed Stick, Nivea Moisturizer, Nivea Lotion, Pantene Shampoo and Conditioner, Aquaphor Ointment, LA Looks Hair Gel, Avatar Aftershave, Jovan White Musk, Advil Tablets, Advil Liquigels, Udderly Smooth Hand Cream, Sweet Tarts Lip Balm, Garnier Fructius Shampoo, Conditioner and Hair Gel, SoftSoap, Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Conditiner, Hawaiian Tropic Sun Junk and Pampers Bibsters. We also recieved a multitude of novelties and toys such as an M&M NASCAR Poster, Kellogg’s hats, an Alpo T-Shirt, Lean Cuisine Water Bottle Holders, Alpo Memo Board, Land O Frost Hot Wheels Cars (6 of these!), a Frisbee, Color Wonder Finger Paints, 2 Levi Strauss Bandanas, five Kellogg’s Beanie toys, a Pop Tart box, 2 Finding Nemo Bubble blowing straws, 2 Scooby Doo Flyers, 3 Colgate Teddy Bears, 1 Stuffed Tony the Tiger, 2 Pokemon Key chains, 2 Star Wars Buttons, 4 GE Light Up Lightbulb necklaces, a Tidy Cat key chain, Tidy Cat Bubble Blowing ink pen, Yard Man key chain, Kitten Chow Key chain, Light Up Rotella Button, and a Nivea Button. I also received a number of very high dollar coupons at Wal-Mart. (I know a lot of people report on Chit Chat that Wal-Mart doesn’t allow coupons to be handed out. I was told that they don’t like to be handed out inside the store because people drop them and someone might slip on them and fall. That is also the reason that they use pretzel sticks rather than toothpicks when they Demo meat or cheese -no injuries can occur from slipping on a round toothpick). The highlight of the week was for my son to fulfill a lifelong wish of his. He has wanted to see the Oscar Meyer Weiner Mobile for years. He let out a gasp when he saw the Weiner Mobile sitting across the parking lot. He was able to go inside and sit behind the driver’s wheel. They dubbed him, “Catsup Christopher” and gave him a weiner whistle. He was beaming all day to have seen the Weiner Mobile! He also saw the Willy Wonka Mobile, the M&M NASCAR, Pedigree NASCAR, Coor’s Light NASCAR, the Spam Mobile and professional souped up racing lawnmowers. There was also professional fishing deomonstrations done by a balck lab and his Master. My son was also able to catch a trout using live bait at a different fishing demonstration. On Day Two of the Vendor Fair at the store, the Colgate Country Music Showdown was set up. There were lots of different country music performers - it was a lot like American Idol. The live music really set the party atmosphere and had everyone in a good mood. Wal-mart had a big tent set up with lots of tables and chairs. Everyone had their tea, ice cream bars and hotdogs and watched some very good entertainment. The Tony Chachere’s wagon was there giving out large servings of catfish and gumbo for a $2.00 donation to the Arkansas Children’s Network. Hannah’s Candles (maker’s of the Evergreen and Ivy Candles and the candles sold on QVC) had a really fun booth set up where you could make your own candle in any combination of colors and scents for only a 25¢ donation to the Arkansas Children‘s Network. They had small granules of wax in a variety of colors that you spooned into a glass container. At the end of the line they poured a small spoonful of melted wax on top to solidify the top so you could take it home. My son and I made several nice candles for only 75¢! On the first night of the Shareholder’s Meeting there was a concert in the basketball arena o n the U of A campus. These are full concerts and the performers are usually kept fairly secretive until the last day or so. We were thrilled to learn that we would be seeing Sara Evans, Brad Paisley and (YIKES!) Will Smith perform. Each act performed about an hour each and it was awesome. I cannot even imagine what those tickets would have cost to see three different headliners! On the second night Jessie McCartney, Shakira and Jimmy Buffet performed outside in the Football Arena. At the actual Shareholders Meeting on Friday morning Jessica Simpson, Bon Jovi and Garth Brooks performed. Garth Brooks hasn’t performed in four years, so that was a HUGE surprise and a HUGE treat! I still can’t believe it! We were able to get all the items you see in the photo plus see a bunch of headliner acts for just the cost of a few shares of stock. And every year we get to do it again and again without buying additional stock. There is another large company in our area that has huge picnics in the summer with a carnival, rides and free carnival food. We are looking into buying shares in that company. Going to the carnival is expensive. It might be worth it to buy stock just for the carnival alone! The moral to this story is this - check out what companies are located in your area and what are the perks for owning stock in that company. It might be well worth it to purchase a few shares of stock that will most likely continue to earn money over the years, but might also get you a few free perks along the way.