This is the Central Indiana Toyota Dealers fourth or fifth year sponsoring the Colts, and this year I've been able take more advantage of that sponsorship. I've made it to a pair of games and interacted more with the organization. Our sponsorship's produced several cool moments over the years, but I don't know if any surpass being able to attend the Colts vs. Miami Dolphins game with 30 of our best customers. It was an awesome game that saw the Colts come back and win it at the end of regulation--the game itself was awesome-- but the day started out with a special event that I'll remember more than the game itself. That's when 15 of our group were selected to participate in the Pre-Game Flag Ceremony. Each dealership from the Central Indiana Toyota Dealers invited a small group to show up at the stadium some 4 hours early so they could help take part in the Pre-Game Flag Presentation and National Anthem. After entering the stadium through a special Events Entrance, the Colts staff took us deep into the innards of Lucas Oil Stadium and gave us instructions for bringing the enormous field-sized American Flag out onto the field prior to kickoff. We practiced once in an empty stadium: practiced the harder-than-it-appeared march-step required to carry an enormous 100-yard long nylon flag in unison through the tunnels of Lucas Oil Stadium and out onto the field, practiced bringing it chest high on command, and then holding it there during the national anthem, practiced waiving the giant flag, and then practiced marching it in double-step off the field and back into the tunnel. After 1.5 hours of practice, they let us wander around Touchdown Town until it was time to head back into the stadium basement. The Colts Staff members lined us all up again, and we carried the flag back out onto the field--but this time in front of nearly 60,000 fans! What an experience! I'll never forget it! When we started waiving the American Flag at the end of the National Anthem...and the crowd, all on their feet, began cheering and clapping...#Goosebumps!
After that, our group went back to our seats up in Section 346--great seats, right in the upper corner of the middle level--to watch the game. We could stand up without blocking the view of anyone behind us, and we had darn near 3 rows of seats--so we did a lot of standing, chatting, high-fiving, jumping, and outright screaming as the game came down to the wire. A LAST SECOND FIELD GOAL sealed the win for the home team and the crowd went BONKERS. Such a fun moment, celebrated with Royal South VIP Customers! Such a fun time. Wow! The partnership with The Colts continued the next week, as The Central Indiana Toyota Dealers unveiled the all new 2019 Toyota Tacoma COLTS EDITION. They held a press conference inside the Colts Practice Facility, right in the endzone, where Tight End Eric Ebron joined us as unofficial spokesperson for the Tacoma Launch. He previewed the Tacoma with a member of the Colts media team--and did a pretty good job. He is an enormous person in real life! You just can't appreciate how big these NFL players are until you get a chance to see them up close. They are truly HUGE people. Eric did a great job as the lighthearted Tacoma spokesperson, and we got our pictures with him and The Tacoma COLTS EDITION. It is always a fun time to rub elbows with the other Colts dealers, and I enjoyed the event. Make sure to check out pictures of the Colts Edition Tacoma on our website, or swing by in person and take it for a test drive. Drivers will love the Lift Kit and Upgraded Tire/Wheel Combo, as well as the Colt's Blue interior ambient lighting, and Colts branded leather seats. It is one of 13 Tacoma's made like this for our Dealer Group. Very limited edition! Come by and check out the COLTS EDITION TACOMA and remember--the customer who purchases the Tacoma will also get an official Colts Helmet signed by the entire 53-man roster!
- Andy Long