These days, we can all use a little more “good” in the world.
That’s why U.S. Bank rolled out its Good Truck across Southern Nevada, to thank the people – from non-profits to healthcare workers to first responders — who are helping our communities get through the pandemic while supporting locally owned restaurants in the process. In the past week alone, the Good Truck’s deliveries included Thanksgiving meals to the day and night shift staff at Centennial Hills Hospital, cupcakes to Las Vegas Metro Police Department precincts around the region and partnering with the non-profit Delivering with Dignity.
“We wanted to show our gratitude to the front-line workers, first responders and non-profit organizations who are doing so much for our communities,” said Judie Verb, Mountain Region Executive Vice President for Consumer & Business Banking at U.S. Bank. “And in times of crisis, it is more important than ever for our small business customers to know we support them.”
The idea for the Good Truck grew out of the U.S. Bank Food Truck, which debuted last fall with the original purpose of highlighting small business restaurant owners by offering free food alongside the opportunity for consumers to learn more about the redesigned U.S. Bank mobile banking app. The truck often stopped at large community events, like the Las Vegas Pride Parade and UNLV game-day tailgating parties. When COVID-19 stay-at-home guidelines rolled out in March, though, the campaign was brought to a halt.
As it eventually became clearer how to safely interact through social distancing and stringent cleaning procedures, the idea of creating a “Good Truck” to support local businesses while honoring modern-day superheroes – the teachers, hospital staff and first responders who have guided our communities through this pandemic – was born. The large public gatherings were tabled in favor of pre-arranged drop offs, featuring individually boxed meals and requisite use of masks, hand sanitizer and line management.
There are as many as four Good Trucks delivering day brighteners across the country. In Las Vegas, the Good Truck debuted on November 25 by delivering more than 350 treats from Candi’s Cake Stand to Las Vegas Metro Police Department stations .
Candice “Candi” Gaiters and her husband, Chris, opened Candi’s Cake Stand in 2016 as a mobile bakery catering events in Southern Nevada, turning her lifelong passion for baking into a family-run business that makes cupcakes, cake pops, layer cakes and other made-to-order treats. Candi’s Cake Stand partnered with U.S. Bank last Fall during the “Made in Las Vegas” Food Truck campaign, and opened their first brick-and-mortar location in Henderson just a few weeks before the pandemic shut everything down. The bakery remained open but cut its prices “because we knew it was a rough time for everyone and we wanted to do what we can to bring our customers joy,” said Candi Gaiters.
“We love our customers and we love giving back to the community,” she said. “Being a part of the Good Truck is very rewarding because we are able to be part of something that’s bigger than just us. Of course we need the business to survive, but we believe that giving back makes the late nights and early mornings all worth it in the end!”
Cathy Catlin, who owns two Jimmy John’s franchises in north and northwest Vegas with her husband, Brian, delivered 600 meals through the Good Truck to Centennial Hills Hospital on Thanksgiving.
“We saw a tremendous drop in sales at the beginning” of the pandemic, Cathy Catlin said. “But we’re slowly coming back, and we’re thankful that the community has stepped up to help us stay viable. That’s why we like to give back when we can.”
In addition to partnering with the current Good Truck campaign, the Catlin’s Jimmy John’s stores also partnered with U.S. Bank earlier this year to deliver sandwiches to the hospital staff at Nellis Air Force Base and also to feed the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds after their flyover to honor healthcare workers. Supporting the military is particularly meaningful to the Catlins, as Brian served 37 years in the U.S. Marine Corps. He and Cathy opened their Jimmy John’s franchise eight years ago as a second career.
Other businesses slated for the Good Truck include Yourway Breakfast + Lunch, Baya Bar Smoothies, Icy Juicy and Soul Food Café Express,
The Good Truck also offers consumers the opportunity to learn more about scheduling an appointment to discuss their banking needs, either in-person or via phone, via usbank.com/book. Keep an eye out over the next several weeks, as the U.S. Bank Good Truck is slated to continue spreading goodwill across Vegas.
U.S. Bank is an Equal Housing Lender. Member FDIC.