Introducing Cat Show Ribbons & Awards

It’s been a long time coming, but we are happy to announce the release of our new Cat Show Awards Catalog.  Filled with colorful ribbons and rosettes, elegant silver, and affordable acrylic awards and plaques, we bring the same familiar Hodges service and reputation to another “breed” of competitions.

In addition to our 32 standard satin ribbon colors, customers can make their rosettes uniquely feline by using our new cat-themed multicolor side streamers. We offer cat breed and coat pattern designs, and Hodges Badge Company is the exclusive manufacturer of CFA (Cat Fanciers of America) multicolor side streamers.

Whether you manage a CFA, TICA, ACFA, AACE or unaffiliated show or club, we hope you will consider our high quality and affordable awards.  To request a Cat Show Awards Catalog, click here.

Bring your basic rosettes up a notch with the Peerless

Or add some frill with the Finchley

The Paw Print Pewtarex plates make a great prize & come in 4 sizes

Heading to the USA Gymnastics Congress

This Wednesday, one of our Customer Service Reps and I will be heading to St. Paul, Minnesota for the 2011 USA Gymnastics Congress and Trade Show.  Held in conjuction with the Visa Championships, these events really do turn the town into “gymnastics central.”

Last year, the event was in Hartford, and highlights included watching the final men’s competition at the Visa Championships,  as well as saying hello to the Olympic Gold Medalist Nastia Liukin.

I can’t say for certain if we’ll bump into any stars this week, but I know we’re excited to meet our customers and show off  some new medals as well as our new custom dog tags.  Maybe we’ll see you there!

Super Spellers

2011 winner Sukanya Roy hoists the trophy

So I have a confession to make.  Last night, instead of watching the NBA finals (or more reality TV), I was glued to ESPN watching the 2011 Scripps National Spelling Bee.  No, Hodges Badge Company didn’t sponsor the shiny gold trophy.  I was just amazed at the abilities of ten to fourteen-year-olds to decipher or recall the spellings of words you don’t come across unless you read the entire dictionary (which the winner did, twice).

Watching the ‘final five’ knock out 21 words in a row, including “caciocavallo”, “völkerwanderung”, “abhinaya”, and others that were difficult to pronounce, let alone spell, I started thinking about my job.   Tell people you work for an awards company and often times you’ll hear the argument about how “everyone gets a trophy” and “kids don’t value hard work when they get awards for just participating.” 

Well, at the Bee, they weren’t handing out trophies to all the finalists or runners-up.  But if you saw what those kids were able to do in front of the TV cameras, you’d probably want to hand them all blue ribbons.  Because sometimes, you don’t have to finish on top of the pack to have accomplished something.

Meet our Customer Service Reps- Part XI

We’re back with another opportunity to get to know our Customer Service Reps.  This time we spoke with Donna, who began working for us last summer.  While she may be relatively new to the Customer Service department, she actually has previous experience working for Hodges Badge Company, as she spent time in our Rhode Island factory as our Shipping Supervisor in the ’90s. 

Now that she spends more time taking calls, Donna shared how interesting it is to talk with people from all over the country, and how much there is to learn about the different type of competitions our awards are a part of. 

When I asked her what customer service means to her, she noted how important it is to make the customer comfortable.  This means being yourself on the phone in order to provide service on a personal level. 

Originally from Fall River, Massachusetts, Donna is a super busy mom to three kids- ages 11, 10 and 6.  When she gets a spare moment, she loves reading, running, and spending time outdoors.

A Little Story about our Cookie Cutters

So if you browsed carefully through our 2011 Dog Show Awards Catalog, you may have noticed we slipped a few new non-traditional prizes into the mix.  In addition to our obedience and agility frames, silver, and new whistles, are a selection of dog-themed cookie cutters.  And keeping with the tradition of our equestrian cookie cutters, the shapes come with a cookie recipe.

McKell, posing in between cookies

Anyone who looks for recipes online knows there are plenty of dog cookie recipes to choose from.  Do you want to use liver, bacon, cheese, jerky bits, yogurt, peanut butter, or another central ingredient?  Well, to make sure the recipe was simple enough, and would get your dog salivating, we had to test the recipes.  Our President Volunteer Baker Rick Hodges was happy to test them out on McKell, our company dog-in-residence.

It turns out the yogurt recipe burned too easily, and the bacon recipe didn’t look too good after it sat in the jar for two days.  Rick said that there was no way he was putting raw liver into his blender!  So we stuck with the dog-approved classic peanut butter.  While McKell “really would rather just lick peanut butter straight from the jar,” apparently she thinks the cookies are pretty good too.

We’re Having a Rosette Sale- 3W is Back!

Great news!  Back by popular request, our three-streamer rosettes with white center streamers (3W) are now on sale through June 17th.  That means you can order the Ideal 3W, Empire 3W, and new to the sale, the Beauty 3W at a significant savings.

These are our classic rosettes with a design twist to help you save.  They feature a white gold rim center with any stock logo, and a white center streamer with customized gold print.  With these special rosettes, the side streamer colors denote placings while the center streamer stays constant to enable the savings.

In a hurry?  Rush orders can still take advantage of this offer. 

Have a question? Leave a comment, send an email to info@hodgesbadge.com, or call Customer service at 800-556-2440.

Made in the U.S.A.

During the evening in March and earlier in April, those of you that tune in to watch ABC World News may have caught a clip from a series of segments on American manufacturing, called Made in America.  Being an American manufacturer, the series caught our eye. 

It was particularly interesting to watch the news crew empty a family’s house of everything made in a foreign country (there was almost nothing left!), and then redecorate with all American products.

Want more information on buying American?  Take a quiz to see if you can correctly identify the brands still made in America.  In addition,  ABC has put together this list of online resources to guide you to American suppliers. 

Lastly, we know there’s still a good bit of time before Memorial Day and the 4th of July, but wouldn’t it be nice to know that your red, white and blue, patriotic ribbons were actually made in America?

Happy Earth Day

In honor of Earth Day 2011, I thought I would take a minute to remind you of a few ways that we have taken steps to be greener and more environmentally conscious. 

  • Our catalogs are printed on paper that uses mixed recycled content.
  • We are installing new energy-efficient lighting throughout our Rhode Island factory, and fluorescent lighting is already in place in all office spaces.
  • We recycle just about everything that can be recycled.  Tons of cardboard and paper, in addition to scrap parts and even awards that were used for engraving practice.
  • We even recycle heat.  We capture the heat from our die presses, filter the air and use it to heat our factories.
  • I’m not sure if you know, but the satin in our ribbons originally comes from wood pulp.  That makes our ribbons biodegradable.
  • Finally, our largest commitment to the planet is our decision to put in a wind turbine to power our Rhode Island factory.  Yes, the process has taken much longer than anticipated, but it will be installed in 2011!

Meet our Customer Service Reps- Part X

We know it’s been a while, but we’re back with another friendly employee from our Customer Service Department.  Caroline may have only been with Hodges Badge Company for 8 months , but she has been a part of our extended family for much longer.  In fact, her mother worked in our Rhode Island rosette department during the 70s and 80s.  Caroline even has memories of being a flower girl for another factory employee that is still with the company.

In her time working at Hodges Badge, Caroline has come to take pride in being part of a smaller, family-owned company.  She noted that our size and attention to the customer enables us to provide a higher level of service.   For example, did you know that we still accept payment by personal check or that if you have prepaid for second day shipping and we can get the order out fast enough to use ground shipping, we’ll refund the customer the difference?  “You just don’t find that anymore” she said.

Outside of work, Caroline keeps busy with her two teenage daughters.  She also enjoys dancing in Zumba classes and admits an affection for anything Disney, with Beauty and the Beast being her favorite movie.

We hope you enjoy getting to know the people that make up our Customer Service department.  Is there anything else you’d like to know that our Reps can answer?  Let us know in the comments.

Getting Ready for Field Day

It’s about the time of year when students look forward to a very special day– Field Day!  If you haven’t yet planned for your Field Day awards or takeaways, don’t worry.  We’ve compiled a list of suggestions that should fit the bill.

The “Focus, Fun, Finish” Field Day ribbon, our Field Day Ribbon Roll, and our Field Day Award Ribbon are all Quick Ship items, which means they ship in 24 hours when you call in your order, and in 72 hours when you order online.

The 100 yard Field Day Ribbon Roll gives you six hundred 2″ x 6″ ribbons, which equals out to cost less than 10 cents per ribbon.  Of course, custom ribbon rolls are also a popular choice.

Many schools also choose our Star or Torch Award Ribbons which come in first through sixth place, and also have a Participant award.

Need to advertise your event?  Our new lower-priced banners will hold up outdoors and help you get the word out.

Lastly, we hope everyone (students and teachers alike) enjoys their special day.  Don’t forget the sunscreen!