THE BIG IDEA
Fast forward to 2001. My family and I were now living near Arnold Palmer’s Bay Hill Club and Lodge. I was playing a lot of golf. And, by now, I’ve ordered a lot of “Arnold Palmers”.
There were many times over the years I wondered about packaging this iced tea-lemonade mix. Over time, the idea began to take shape. During a golf outing rain delay, I shared my idea with my food and beverage industry associates Charley Beck and Mark Dowey. With a golf course as our backdrop, and as I sipped on an Arnold Palmer, we formulated the business plan that would become Arnold Palmer Tea. I formalized the plan that weekend, working Saturday and Sunday from my home office. I sent several copies of the proposal to IMG (International Management Group) in Cleveland, Ohio, for review. IMG represented Arnold Palmer Enterprises, as well as hundreds of other athletes and celebrities around the world.
We worked with our design team TKO to develop the visuals and our flavor house (Allen Flavors in New Jersey) to develop a great tasting formula. The original concepts took the famous Palmer umbrella and replaced it with a lemon wedge skewered by a golf tee. Our cartons were bright blue, making them like no other currently in the grocery aisle. And, of course, Arnold Palmer’s image was prominently displayed.