A Very Merry (Martin’s) New Year
December 28, 2020
10 min. read
Every new year brings with it hopes and dreams for the future. And this year, especially, we have a big reason to celebrate the end of something old and the beginning of something new. When we look back over the past year, it’s easy to see all the things we wish had gone differently—the little things we took for granted. This is especially apparent when we compare our findings with a previous year’s, such as our Top 18 Moments of 2018. Things that once seemed given, or mundane, we now wish we could have back.
So instead of reminiscing over the past year, we’re looking forward with eager anticipation of all that is to come: the bright and happy things that bring joy, gratitude, and hope for the future. We’re finding ourselves reprioritizing what’s important and setting up a vision for a better future.
21 Reasons We’re Excited for 2021
Here are a few of the many blessings we’re hoping to accomplish in the coming year, both as a company and as a group of individuals.
1. New Recipes & Blogs
We have some exciting new content planned to share with you in the coming year! Here’s a sneak peek of what you can expect:
- Holiday Grilled Cheese Recipes: Similar to our Monthly Burger Series in 2019, we’ll be creating special grilled cheese recipes themed around each major holiday next year!
- Chef Showcase Blog: You all loved our Smash Burger Showcase blog from back in September… So much so that we’re bringing you another round in the form of several famous fried chicken sandwich recipes!
- Website Update: To top it all off, all of this great content will be housed on a brand new potatorolls.com! That’s right—we’re relaunching a new website design at the start of the new year. We hope you’re as excited as we are!
2. Sporting Events
Baseball took a major hit in 2020, with its season having been postponed and later cut by more than half the regular number of games. Here’s to hoping it can make a full recovery in 2021 and get fans back to enjoying “America’s favorite pastime!”
Professional Football has so far managed to get by fairly unscathed in regards to the pandemic, and we’re certainly excited to witness its culmination in the form of the championship game in February 2021!
Psst… If you’re planning on watching the “Big Game,” be on the lookout in the coming weeks for great game day recipes, resources, and a chance to win FREE Martin’s Potato Rolls for your game-watching necessities! You’ll find all this and more at MartinsUltimateGamePlan.com.
Sadly, spring was a bit of a downer this past year, so we’re looking forward to brighter, sunnier days when we can enjoy the brisk spring air, flowering gardens, Easter festivities, and new life. Stay tuned for some fresh spring recipes on our blog in a few months!
4. Health & Wellness
If this year has taught us anything, it is not to take our health for granted. We are so grateful to all the healthcare workers and medical professionals who are working tirelessly to keep us all safe. In addition, we’re looking forward to being able to have regularly scheduled doctors’ appointments so we can stay healthy, and being able to visit loved ones in hospitals or nursing homes whenever we’d like.
The same goes for wellness and “self-care” practices such as working out at the gym, attending wellness classes, or getting our hair and nails done at the salon. We’re grateful for these industries and eagerly anticipating our return to support our local businesses.
5. Dining at Our Favorite Restaurants
While the foodservice industry is still reeling from the effects of the pandemic, we are hopeful for the day when we can return to our favorite restaurants, cafes, diners, and food trucks without hesitation. Restaurants are meant for gathering with friends and neighbors, enjoying great food, and taking in the lively atmosphere.
Along with this, we can’t wait to visit Martin’s restaurant and foodservice customers again to show our support and reconnect with our chef friends who’ve been struggling lately. A big shout-out to the entire foodservice industry for your resilience and perseverance in 2020. Here’s to a better tomorrow!
6. The Summer Games
At the moment, after a one-year postponement, the 2020 Summer Games are still scheduled to take place in Tokyo in 2021. After the year we’ve all had (around the globe) we think everyone could use some camaraderie and friendly competition as we cheer on our respective country’s athletes in their outstanding accomplishments. Let’s go team!
There were times this past year where forced quarantines and “stay at home” orders brought some welcome quietude and chance for peaceful reflection that we don’t often experience in our usually busy lives. However, we’re more than ready now for cross-country road trips, family adventures, and international travel to resume whenever it is safe to do so.
8. Trade Shows & Events
Speaking of traveling, we’re eagerly anticipating the return of our corporate events and trade shows, most of which saw cancellations in 2020. Food service shows such as the National Restaurant Association Show and consumer-focused events like the Food Network New York City and South Beach Wine and Food Festivals bring the amazing opportunity to network with like-minded individuals in the food and beverage industry. We look forward each year to these events as they open new doors for Martin’s Potato Rolls and Bread products to make their way into new restaurants, institutions, and market areas across the U.S. and abroad. We are thankful to be part of the greater food and beverage industry and are excited for the day when we can connect in person with fellow foodies, business owners, chefs, and restaurateurs.
9. Martin’s Summer Fun Season 2.0
Despite all the chaos of 2020, we were able to bring some much-needed fun and excitement to our fans this past year with our “Summer Fun Season” campaign, where we gave away various themed prizes all throughout the summer along with great recipes and resources to share with our fans. And…you guessed it! We’re planning another Summer Fun Season in 2021 with brand new sweepstakes prizes, burger and grilling ideas, and helpful tips and tricks to make sure you have the best summer imaginable. So, get excited!
10. Traditional Holidays
There’s no denying that holiday celebrations certainly looked a whole lot different this year—from Easter all the way through to Christmas this past week. And while we’re happy to follow any precautions that help to keep our friends and loved ones safe, we’re longing for the time when we can meet together freely, hug our extended family members, attend church services and community gatherings, and share good food across the table with each another. Bring on a new year filled (hopefully) with Valentine’s dates, Easter egg hunts, 4th of July fireworks, parades, trick or treating, Thanksgiving feasts, and family Christmas festivities!
Many of us have not been able to do regular volunteer work this past year. From hosting exchange students to ringing the Salvation Army bells, hosting chicken dinner benefits and pancake breakfasts, participating in afterschool programs and various fundraising events, we’re hoping 2021 brings new opportunities to support our local communities through traditional in-person means.
12. Concerts, Movies, & Live Performances
Watching movies on the big screen with a bucket of popcorn in our hands…Oohing and aahing over magic shows, stage acts, and live orchestras…Cheering on our kids at their hard-worked-for band and choir concerts… We miss all these and more, and we’re excited for their future debut.
13. Back to School
Parents, teachers, and students alike can probably relate to this one. Let’s get the kids back to learning alongside their friends and classmates, participating in school activities and extracurriculars, and celebrating their accomplishments through ceremonies, championships, and performances. Just hang in there a little while longer until ordinary classroom settings are feasible again. Great job to all the educators out there who found innovative ways to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances!
Maybe people’s vacations this year had to be canceled, altered, or cut short. Here’s hoping 2021 brings freedom to travel, reconnect with friends and family, and make new memories—at beaches, lakefronts, amusement parks, resorts, hotels, airports, the “great outdoors”—wherever we’d like to go. (P.S., for a list of top U.S. travel destinations, visit our blog.)
15. Handshakes & Smiles
Handshakes are a meaningful part of our culture—they connect people to one another, signifying acceptance and helping to build trust. They act as a friendly greeting and an introduction to a new or continuing relationship. Without these gestures, things like business meetings or welcoming new acquaintances are simply not the same.
Similarly, we miss seeing each other’s smiles, unobscured by layers of fabric. Thinking back to a year ago, we never imagined this would be something we’d take for granted. A friendly smile goes a long way and we’re waiting with expectation when seeing this will be “the norm” again.
16. Conversations that do not include…
Covid, coronavirus, CDC, headache, chills, fever, hospitals, regulations, shut-down, telecommunting, masks, “the spread,” “in these troubled times,” “unprecedented times,” “in these trying times,” “challenging times,” “now more than ever”…
Oh, how we long for “normal” conversations again—about the weather, news, current events—without being plagued by the drama of the year 2020.
17. Celebrations and Life Events
We felt sympathetic for those planning weddings, baby showers, and birthday parties this year who had to make last-minute changes in plans. But we’re holding out hope that those special life events, which are best experienced with our friends and loved ones around us, will be back bigger and better than ever! (Tip: Planning a wedding in 2021? You’ll love these great recipe ideas!)
18. Employee Gatherings
We love our family of coworkers, and we’re eagerly anticipating having in-person meetings once again. While we’re grateful for technology that helps us stay connected when we’re far apart, we—like many—are beginning to have “Zoom fatigue.” Virtual meetings via cellphones and desktops are just not the same as “the real thing.”
Additionally, Martin’s typically hosts several corporate events, such as employee appreciation day, our annual Christmas luncheon, and our tri-annual company picnic. These activities help us to stay connected and engaged cross-departmentally, and we’re so blessed when able to participate in them.
19. Market Expansion
This past year, Martin’s saw expansion into new retail market spaces, such as Birmingham, Alabama; Austin, Houston, and San Antonio, Texas; Greenville and Columbia, South Carolina; Western Pennsylvania; and the Midwestern United States. We are so grateful for the growing demand for our products in these and other markets, and looking forward to seeing where else the future takes Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls and Bread!
20. Working with Influencers
It is always a joy getting to work with talented bloggers, established or up-and-coming chefs, and social media influencers, who love to recommend our products to their friends and followers. From our Texas “BBQ Pride Sweepstakes” a few months back, to our “Very Merry Swag Boxes” this holiday season, we love getting to meet and interact with our growing network of foodies and are looking forward to continuing this tradition into the new year.
21. Our Fans
Last, but certainly not least, thank you to our “raving fans,” who continue to show their love for our products even in hard times. We love you back and are honored to be able to continue serving you with high-quality bread and rolls products for years to come.
A Very Merry Martin’s Giveaway: Recap
Our third and final round of A Very Merry Martin’s Giveaway has officially ended. Thank you to everyone who participated and congratulations to each of our winners! Be sure to keep your eye out for future contests and giveaways by subscribing to our social media channels, or signing up for our email newsletter.
By the way—there’s still time to find holiday recipe ideas for your New Year’s celebration! Head over to https://VeryMerryMartins.com and explore our holiday resource hub to find delicious appetizers, fun facts, and New Year resolution inspiration!
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We wish you a Very Merry New Year!
With Love, Martin’s
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