Hodges Hits the Road

Just wanted to write a quick post to let you know about two trade shows we’ll be attending in the next few weeks.  This weekend (3/26-3/28), we’ll be in San Francisco meeting with education professionals at the ASCD Annual Conference & Exhibit Show.  Two weeks later (4/8-4/9), we’ll be attending the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) 90th Annual Convention & Expo in Tampa, Florida.

Know a teacher, principal or other administrator who’s attending?   We love to meet friendly faces of both new and current customers. Tell them to stop by for free samples of our scholastic awards and a chance to win a Hodges Badge Company gift certificate.

Announcing a HUGE Trophy Sale

We’d like to let you know about a new sale we’re having.  5-1/2″ through 12″ trophies in ALL markets are now 20% off.  Equestrian trophies? Check.  Dog show trophies? Check.  Our new Athletic trophies including the Signature and Superstar series?  Yes, them too. 

You don’t need a key code or postcard to participate– any order from today through June 30th will receive the discount, no matter if you order by phone, web, or email.   And better yet, our trophies always include free text engraving.

So let’s do a little browsing.  We’ve recently expanded our selection of trophy columns and figurine choices.  Many of our popular designs used on rosette side streamers now have an equivalent trophy column.  Did you know you can even use a custom design on your column?

10" Custom Column w/ Victory Wreath

 Our popular Ruby Marble series has trophies included in the sale, like this 12″ item with the year in gold trim.

12" Ruby Marble Award Trophy

Need to give awards for your Spring sports?  We have Superstar trophies in softball, baseball, lacrosse, track and tennis.

6-1/2" Softball Superstar Resin Trophy

Have a question?  Leave us a comment or call Customer Service at 1-800-556-2440.

Have you bought or sold awards on ebay?

It recently was brought to my attention that new, unused rosettes  had been offered for sale in several online auctions through ebay.  While it turns out that a show was selling their unused ribbons as part of a charity auction, the scenario still made me wonder- would you buy or sell previously awarded ribbons or rosettes on ebay? 

Sure enough, looking on ebay, there are plenty of ribbons for sale, both new and vintage, from single Grand Prix championship rosettes to lots of 50 smaller and simpler ribbons. I understand that a quilter might be using these ribbons as material for their craft, or a decorator might be interested in the vintage rosettes for an artistic endeavor.   And we would never claim to have a say in what happens to our awards after they are shipped out the door.

But who is scooping up these lots of ribbon for $1 or $2?  Maybe someone running a therapeutic facility snatches up the awards at a low cost.  Have you sold off ribbons on ebay to prepare for a move or clean out your child’s closet?  We’re honestly just curious.  Let us know of your experiences in the comments.

Revisiting Ribbons Past

Back in July, I wrote a blog post about catalogs and ribbons from past years (decades!) that was fairly popular.  By request, I have dug through the dusty boxes again in order to find some more vintage ribbons and images to show you how much things have changed.  Enjoy!

Back in 1961, there was no catalog or pamphlet. Our customers received this flyer instead. Note the phone number at the top right. KEnmore 6-6400 - close to Kenmore Square in Cambridge, Mass! In 1961 there were 4 Hodges in the business - Ted, Marice and Nina, and Ted's son Jim, who had just completed studies at MIT. Our current president, Rick Hodges, wasn't born until 1962.

In the mid '60s, we introduced the Ideal. With only one streamer and just a 3" pleated top, it's quite different than what we call the Ideal today.

Thought you'd also like to see our '60s sash model. Anyone have a name for Miss Boston?

In the mid '70s there were more unique rosette choices. The Patriot wasn't actually discontinued until the early '90s.

There were even more rosette options created in the '80s, including the Banbury seen above.

Hope you enjoyed visiting ribbons and catalogs from years past.   Do any of you still have your awards dating back from these years?  We’d love for you to share your photos!

Introducing the Championship Line- Part II

In our previous post, I mentioned there were simply too many new products in our Championship Line to introduce all at once.  This post will show you some of our new handcrafted pewter pieces.

Our Boardman Silversmiths pewter items include the Louisville Rose Garland Serving Tray, which is available in three sizes, and the Newport Pedestal Bowl, which has five size options from a 5″ diameter to a 12″ diameter.

Rose Garland Tray

Newport Pedestal Bowl

We also expanded our offering of Pewtarex plates.  In addition to the horse rim plates, we now have the Gadroon with a more elaborate rim, and the Iris Tray with carefully finished flowers (and a little frog!) decorating the left side. 

Pewtarex Gadroon

Pewtarex Iris Tray

Lastly, did you know you can order your own custom logo on the rim of a Pewtarex plate or bowl?  With just a 36 piece minimum, you’ll be awarding a prize you can be sure your competitors have never received.  Call Customer Service to request a quote.

Pewtarex with Custom Logo

Introducing the Championship Line- Part I

If you have received our 2011 Equestrian Catalog, you may have noticed a section towards the back with pages of new products.  With customers asking for items that were suitable for End of the Year and  Series High Point awards, we have significantly added to our offerings of silver and pewter, as well as brought in new pieces of crystal, bronze resin trophies, and high-end mango wood frames and plaques.

Mango Wood Disproportionate Frame

I wanted to preview a few pieces from the Championship Line here on the blog.  Of course if you’d like to review the items in print, please click here to request a catalog.

For those of you looking for a timeless silver plate, our new OG Edge Plain Tray comes in 17″ and 20″ sizes, large enough to engrave the names of many years’ winners. 

OG Plain Edge Tray

For a silver perpetual trophy, consider our new Wine Cooler. It can be placed on our cherry tone base with 32 silver brushed plates.

Engraveable Wine Cooler

Our Crystal Trophy Vase also comes in three sizes, and would make an impressive trophy for any event. 

Crystal Trophy Vase

Finally, our Horse Head bronze resin trophy also appeals to multiple disciplines.

Horse Head Bronze Resin Trophy

There are many other beautiful pieces to share, but I’d be making you scroll through pictures for way too long!  Check back later for Part II on our new pewter pieces.  Can’t wait?  Head on over to the website and click around our Equestrian Awards tab.

Let’s Talk: Debating “Trophy Kids” and Participation Awards

Much has been written about the “entitlement generation” and how Millenial students are accustomed to receiving rewards for accomplishing everyday tasks.  Working for an awards company, I have often engaged in conversation with customers that covers both sides of the argument.  Some parents exclaim, “When I was young, I had to work hard for my trophies.  They weren’t just given out to everyone.”  Others are thrilled that we offer stock ribbons with Participant or “Everyone is a Winner” designs so that children build confidence and have a memento of their event.

In recent years, the “anti-award” side of the argument has caught on more in the press as the “trophy kids” have grown up. Critics claim that participation awards and “a trophy for everyone” has raised a generation that expects a reward for mediocrity.

Certainly we do see orders where, for example, everyone at a swim meet gets a ribbon up to 30th place.  While we understand the purpose behind awarding ribbons to (nearly) all the participants, we are not blind to the fact that the swimmers receiving our 27th place ribbon probably won’t treasure it the way they would a first place ribbon.

Then again, just because a team in a rec league doesn’t make it to the Championship game doesn’t mean that that particular season wasn’t a great learning experience or great source of memories.  A small award for those team members may be just as valuable as a winner’s medal, just for different reasons. 

So here’s the part where we encourage some lively conversation.  Have you awarded trophies or ribbons for participation?  Did you feel it was the right thing to do or were they just to stop the tears?   Do you think you value awards you received as a child more than today’s kids do?  Share your opinion in the comments.

Budget-Friendly Medal Options

In travelling to trade shows and speaking with our customers, I have often seen people admire our medal display and then remark “but I don’t have a budget for medals.”  When I go over the pricing of our medal selection, they are often surprised to find out that we have many budget-friendly options.  Especially at this time of year, with our Winter Sale, we really do have a medal for every budget.

CX Medal with Grosgrain Neck Ribbon

Our most cost-conscious option is the CX Medal on a grosgrain neck ribbon.  The regular price of 75 cents each applies to any quantity, and that is without the 10% Winter Sale discount. For a larger (1-1/2″) coin, many people choose the LX medal for $1.25, or 99 cents if you purchase 500.  Again, these prices are without the 10% discount.

LX Medal with Satin Neck Ribbon

For those customers that need to customize each medal, the most cost-effective way to do so is with custom printing on a satin neck ribbon.  Using any of our 31 colors (the same as we use for our ribbons and rosettes), your custom printing is included in the medal cost (a $10 setup applies for under 25 neck ribbons).

For a completely customized medal center, our metallic inserts on an 1-3/4″ LBX Medal are just $1.35 on a grosgrain neck ribbon (qty. less than 500).  Using a full color center (great for multicolor logos) adds just 15 cents to the price.

LBX Medal with Grosgrain Neck Ribbon

Of course, we offer a much wider selection than some of the options I’ve just highlighted here in this post.  Be sure to browse online or request a catalog to check out our full range of options.

Have you ordered medals?  Any tips for those on a budget?   Let us know in the comments.

Planning for a Meeting?

While Hodges Badge has long been associated with award ribbons, and more recently with other types of awards and trophies, we wanted to let you know that we can also help out when you are planning a meeting or reunion.

  • Need name tags but don’t want “Hello my name is” stickers? Try our custom printed stick-on tags. For a nicer touch, our pin on name tags match a color in your logo with a ribbon at the top.
  • We also have stock ID ribbons for traditional responsibilities (Board Member, Sponsor, Official, Speaker, Volunteer etc.) and both horizontal and vertical tape top ribbons you can use to attach to name badges.
  • Buttons are also popular at reunions, and you can even put individual names and photos on them for no extra charge. Turn them into a keychain and they’re a simple souvenir.
  • Lastly, our banners can be hung indoors or out to let everyone know about your event.

Have you ever used our products for anything besides a horse show, dog show, fair, or athletic competition? How did it turn out? Let us know in the comments!

2010- A Year in Review

Wow!  It’s been almost a year since I’ve taken up writing for our blog, and there’s been quite a lot that we’ve shared with readers on this space since January 1st.  Looking back, we’ve accomplished a lot.  Here are a few of the highlights, especially for those of you that may not have been following for a full 365 days yet 😉

 We’ve been to trade shows both near (Tri State Camp Conference, USA Gymnastics National Congress) and far (ASCD, Western States Horse Expo).  We watched the competitors at Rolex, and cheered on the teams at IHSA Nationals. We introduced you to where we live, to ten of our Customer Service reps, and even to our employees’ pets.

We announced a new sponsorship with the IEAanswered FAQs and even delved 40 years back into our catalog archive. We compiled tips on how to save you money, were visited by a Senator, contributed to charities, and launched a new website.  We celebrated our 100th post, Customer Service Week and Earth Day. Unfortunately, we hit a few setbacks in the timeline for our wind turbine launch, but hey- it’s something to look for in 2011!

That seems like a lot, but it takes a good amount of stories to keep our blog going!  Happy New Year to everyone who is in any way a part of the extended Hodges Badge family.  We look forward to working with you in 2011!