I realized many of our PCH Blog readers might like to hear how our rose bouquet tradition got started when I saw some of your comments in response to Amanda’s February 17th PCH Blog post. (Yes, I do read them!)
When we first started delivering Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes prizes directly to winners’ doors in 1988, we routinely brought along flowers and balloons to add colorful accents to the videotaped winning moments. Minutes before the actual presentations we’d stop at a local florist and pick up whatever flowers were on hand, generally a mixed bouquet of carnations, daisies, or wild flowers. “Wrap ‘em up!” we’d say, then speed away in the Prize Patrol van to make a surprise award. Of course our PCH winner was flabbergasted by our visit, especially The Big Check. The flowers were gratefully received with a courteous “Aren’t they nice?”
One day a local florist didn’t have any ordinary flowers to give us. “All we have today is red long-stemmed American Beauty roses,” she said. “But I’ll give you a special price on a rose bouquet since I won’t have anything else ‘til later today.”
“Oh aren’t they beautiful!!” she exclaimed. “I’ve never gotten a rose bouquet in my entire life! Oh, I’m going to cry,” which she promptly did.
The next day, another bouquet of roses elicited more tears from a middle-aged woman winner. “I haven’t gotten roses since I was 16!”
Often the roses steal the show. Click on this link to the Prize Patrol’s journey to Veronica Trombino’s winning moment (last March) and you’ll hear the lucky winner say “The roses would have been enough!” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RM072lHgtHM
Some of you have commented that – as nice as the red roses are – you’d rather have star lilies or sunflowers or pink roses. The fact is — whatever flowers we bring, they will eventually fade away. But the thrill of winning AND the prize money represented by The Big Check will last a lot longer – perhaps a lifetime.
PCH Prize Patrol Ambassador