Throwback Thursday: Our cover contest in January 2003

January 2003 CoverIt’s been 11 years since we ran a big contest. That’s Mark Gold and Lou Siecinski, owners of Pizza Shuttle in Milwaukee, who won our very first cover contest back in January 2003. We gave operators the opportunity to get their customers to vote on pizzatoday.com. The result? Siecinski and Gold were featured in a big story in magazine and got plenty of attention from the industry.

We took that a step further this year with our Guest Editor Gig. Operators were encouraged to write essays and submit photos of them in their pizzerias, and then the editorial staff took the three best entries and put them online for voting. We left the voting period open for just five days — but we received more than 2,100 votes from all over the world.

Our winner, Brian Weavel, owns Anna’s Pizza & Pasta in brian weavelWinnebago, Ilinois. He did a tremendous amount of self-promotion. Not only did he go to local television stations and radio stations, but he promoted it heavily in his own social media. That hard work and persistence paid off. Weavel received a whopping 65 percent of the vote.

Weavel will visit the Pizza Today office the week of July 21 and will help our staff cook, shoot video, choose photos, write columns and interview pizzerias. We think he’s going to be a GREAT addition to the PT team … and watch out Jeremy –– this might be a temporary gig but we might just keep him!

Stay tuned for more on Brian’s visit!