Internet fans of Martin Guitar flock to Nazareth
by Sherri Hoff
It was a beautiful, sunny day filled with fun, excitement, visitors and a company car show. This was the day when approximately 150 Martin Guitar enthusiasts flocked to the company's factory for the third annual gathering of the Unofficial Martin Guitar Forum. This internet family of Martin Maniacs has grown to nearly 6,000 members since it began in March 2001.
In addition to the Forum members, Martin Guitar sponsors a Guitar Design program at our local Community College, Northampton Community College in Bethlehem Township. The participants of the class kick off their design course program by taking a tour of the Martin Guitar factory and are addressed by Chris Martin.
The day begins at 7:00 AM throughout the morning as visitors arrive and are greeted by the Martin Guitar 'Fretty's' while acoustic guitar music welcomes them to our facility. Forum members arrive for pre-scheduled tours, every 15 minutes, beginning at 8:15 AM and culminating with the last tour at 10:15 AM. The members were invited to view and play our newest prototype guitars that were released at the July NAMM show in Nashville, Tennessee. Chris Martin then met with the group for a question and answer period before a catered lunch was shared with all company employees. The day featured an employee car show, which included everything from new model vehicles to antique trucks, cars and motorcycles, 50 in all.
All visitors, as well as the guitar design and forum members were invited to share lunch on this special day, while employees and a few forum members provided music on the company float during the lunch periods.
This day coincided with one of the company's quarterly update meetings and distribution of profit sharing checks.