The Interstate Batteries home office in Dallas will be closed Friday, Dec. 6, 2013, due to inclement weather. Team members, please be careful if you venture out onto the icy roads.
Guest post by Interstate Batteries Chaplain Henry Rogers:
We are blessed in this country as we reflect on our rich heritage! We all know about Thanksgiving and celebrate it every year. And though you probably know about turkey and football, how much more do you know about our country’s origins?
Might be fun to read as your family gathers on Thursday to give thanks! We have much to be thankful for in this country, and learning more about our heritage is sure to make us even more thankful. Enjoy!
by Kerby Anderson
A day of thanksgiving was set aside by the Pilgrims who founded Plymouth Colony. This colony was the first permanent settlement in New England. The Pilgrims were originally known as the Forefathers or Founders. The term Pilgrim was first used in the writings of colonist William Bradford and is now used to designate them.
2. Why did they celebrate Thanksgiving?
Life was hard in the New World. Out of 103 Pilgrims, 51 of these died in the first terrible winter. After the first harvest was completed, Governor William Bradford proclaimed a day of thanksgiving and prayer. By 1623, a day of fasting and prayer during a period of drought was changed to one of thanksgiving because the rain came during their prayers. The custom prevailed in New England and eventually became a national holiday.
3. When did Thanksgiving become a national holiday?
The state of New York adopted Thanksgiving Day as an annual custom in 1817. By the time of the Civil War, many other states had done the same. In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln appointed a day of thanksgiving. Since then, each president has issued a Thanksgiving Day proclamation. Until 1939, Thanksgiving was the last Thursday of November. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt changed it to the second-to-last Thursday of the month. On December 26, 1941, Congress passed a law declaring that Thanksgiving would occur every year on the fourth Thursday of November.
4. Why did the Pilgrims leave Europe?
Among the early Pilgrims was a group of Separatists who were members of a religious movement that broke from the Church of England during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In 1606 William Brewster led a group of Separatists to Leiden (in the Netherlands) to escape religious persecution in England. After living in Leiden for more than 10years, some members of the group voted to emigrate to America. The voyage was financed by a group of London investors who were promised produce from America in exchange for their assistance.
5. How did the Pilgrims emigrate to the New World?
On September 16, 1620, a group numbering 102 men, women, and children left Plymouth, England, for America on the Mayflower. Having been blown off course from their intended landing in Virginia by a terrible storm, the Pilgrims landed at Cape Cod on November 11. On December 21, they landed on the site of Plymouth Colony. While still on the ship, the Pilgrims signed the Mayflower Compact.
6. What is the Mayflower Compact?
On November 11, 1620, Governor William Bradford and the leaders on the Mayflower signed the Mayflower Compact before setting foot on land. They wanted to acknowledge God’s sovereignty in their lives and their need to obey Him. The Mayflower Compact was America’s first great constitutional document and is often called “The American Covenant.”
7. What is the significance of the Mayflower Compact?
After suffering years of persecution in England and spending difficult years of exile in the Netherlands, the Pilgrims wanted to establish their colony on the biblical principles they suffered for in Europe. Before they set foot on land, they drew up this covenant with God. They feared launching their colony until there was a recognition of God’s sovereignty and their collective need to obey Him.
8. What does the Mayflower Compact say?
“In the name of God, Amen. We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread sovereign Lord, King James, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland king, defender of the faith, etc., Having undertaken, for the glory of God, and advancement of the Christian faith, and honor of our king and country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these present solemnly and mutually in the presence of God, and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic, for better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends foresaid, and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the Colony, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape Cod the 11th of November, in the year of the reign of our sovereign Lord, King James, of England, France, and Ireland.”
9. Why didn’t the pilgrims sail to the original destination in Virginia?
The Pilgrims were blown off course and landed at Cape Cod in what now appears to be God’s providence. Because their patent did not include this territory, they consulted with the Captain of the Mayflower and resolved to sail southward. But the weather and geography did not allow them to do so. They encountered “dangerous shoals and roaring breakers” and were quickly forced to return to Cape Cod. From there they began scouting expeditions and finally discovered what is now Plymouth. Had they arrived just a few years earlier, they would have been attacked and destroyed by one of the fiercest tribes in the region. However, three years earlier (in 1617), the Patuxet tribe had been wiped out by a plague. The Pilgrims thus landed in one of the few places where they could survive.
10. What role did the lone surviving Indian play in the lives of the Pilgrims?
There was one survivor of the Patuxet tribe: Squanto. He was kidnapped in 1605 by Captain Weymouth and taken to England where he learned English and was eventually able to return to New England. When he found his tribe had been wiped out by the plague, he lived with a neighboring tribe. When Squanto learned that the Pilgrims were at Plymouth, he came to them and showed them how to plant corn and fertilize with fish. He later converted to Christianity. William Bradford said that Squanto “was a special instrument sent of God for their good beyond their expectation.”
11. What has been the significance of the Pilgrims and their legacy of Thanksgiving?
On the bicentennial celebration of the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock, Daniel Webster on December 22, 1820, declared the following: “Let us not forget the religious character of our origin. Our fathers were brought hither by their high veneration for the Christian religion. They journeyed by its light, and labored in its hope. They sought to incorporate its principles with the elements of their society, and to diffuse its influence through all their institutions, civil, political, or literary.”
The legacy of the Pilgrims and Thanksgiving is the legacy of godly men and women who sought to bring Christian principles to this nation. These spread throughout the nation for centuries.
A command station radios go/no-go checks as the all-volunteer team preps the vehicle called the North American Eagle™ Supersonic Land Speed Challenger.
The driver, American TV personality Jessi Combs, enters a cockpit at the front of a 56-foot rocket with four wheels.
Instead of a steering wheel, she grabs a joystick, and instead of other racers, Jessi’s opponent was a record: 308 miles per hour, the women’s four-wheel land speed record set in 1965 set by Lee Breedlove.
On Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013, Jessi broke the record, driving the North American Eagle Supersonic Land Speed Challenger an average of 392 mph in two runs. The 50,000-horsepower jet-car was a refitted F-104 jet originally flown in the 1950s and 1960s. At one point, Jessi reached a top speed of 440.709 mph.
“That felt so unbelievably good. I knew that one was really, really fast,” Jessi said when told of her new record.
THE POWER BEHIND THE SPEED
More than 80 premium-quality sponsors from aerospace engineering to coffee supplier to Interstate Batteries of Seattle supported the Supersonic Land Speed Challenger’s development.
Interstate Distributor Tom Allen has worked with the North American Eagle team, based in south Seattle, for quite a while and known Ed Shadle, one of the team’s owners, from their local racing community.
IBS of Seattle put up money for the fuel to travel to the Alvord Desert — and also provided about eight of Interstate’s top-of-the-line batteries, the 31-AGM7, normally used for cranking and auxiliary power for commercial trucks.
Why’s a trucker’s battery the best pick for the Supersonic Land Speed Challenger? Tom gave three reasons: vibration, safety and power.
The 31-AGM7 is a sealed, absorbed glass-mat battery made from pure, non-alloy lead. AGM batteries sport impressive vibration resistance, and being sealed limits the risk of leaking or spills in a worst-case scenario. The Land Speed Challenger also needed power for tons of onboard electronics — and something to kick-start the jet engine’s ignition. The 31-AGM7, using a unique internal design called Pure Matrix power, can deliver long stretches of electricity and thousands of cold cranking amps — perfect for the team’s needs.
The North American Eagle team has declared a mission to break the world land speed record of 763 mph set in Oct. 15, 1997, by British team Thrust SSC.
They also plan to beat the world female land speed record of 512 mph set in 1976 by stuntwoman and TV star Kitty O’Neil in a three-wheeled vehicle. The team will make its next attempt in 2014.
With the competition for the next land speed record picking up heat, we’re confident that the North American Eagle crew can come out on top. Way to break a record, team!
Schpeen, which is East Side Detroit slang for “best friend,” is their canine behind the counter. Over the years, they have had a series of multi-talented rescue dog “employees” that have proved to be a real incentive for customers to keep coming back. In fact, some tell sales associate Patty Bach repeatedly, “I go there to see the dog!”
Patty said, “I can honestly say that Schpeen’s presence in the store has driven sales up.”
Schpeen works six days a week and never calls in sick. On a normal day, you’ll see him retrieving everything from spark plugs to brake fluid—and receiving tips along the way. In his eight years at the store, he has earned more than $700 in tips, all of which get donated to the Detroit Humane Society.
The only parts Schpeen can’t retrieve are the batteries. Select Auto Parts has sold Interstate exclusively for more than 40 years. Patty said, “I personally think Interstate is one of the best batteries.”
Good boy, Schpeen! Thanks for making the customers’ battery buying experience one in a million.
Watch Schpeen in action:
The results are in and Interstate Batteries makes the list of the Top 100 Places to work in DFW for the fifth straight year. Coming in at No. 14 in the large company category, Interstate is one of only 16 companies who have made the list each year.
“I’m grateful that our Interstate culture is strong and attractive and firmly rooted in values like the Golden Rule. We’re part of something much bigger and purposeful than selling batteries,” said Interstate Batteries President & CEO Scott Miller. “Interstate impacts people’s lives for the good every day. The purpose is the ‘why’ behind why we exist.”
The Dallas Morning News partnered with WorkplaceDynamics to survey 321 companies. Using 19 statements about the workplace, job, work/life balance and other topics, companies receive a ranking. According to The Dallas Morning News, this year’s top-ranking statement was “I believe this company is going in the right direction.”
Employers’ extras, from silly to sensible, set the right tone (The Dallas Morning News)
Want to work for a top employer? Visit our careers page now.
Team Interstate‘s Denny Hamlin may call 2013 a season to forget, but its finale was one to remember. Denny won Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, continuing his streak of at least one victory in each of his eight full Cup seasons.
Denny suffered a compression fracture in his back earlier in the season and had to miss four races. He returned with continued pain and suffered a handful of bad finishes. He ended the season 23rd in points, the lowest finishing position of his career.
“At this point what I really love about this win is that you appreciate it so much more because you went through the bad times,” Denny said. “I was just so fortunate for the first seven years of my career to not really have a horrible season. It was just taken for granted, it seemed like. For me it just makes me appreciate that opportunity that I have, really the cars that I drive.”
Teammate Matt Kenseth finished second, but it wasn’t enough to catch Jimmie Johnson, who won his sixth championship. Matt finished the season in 2nd place.
Team Interstate’s Kyle Busch wrangled his ill-handling racecar to a seventh-place finish Sunday. The top-10 finish helped Kyle secure fourth in the final Sprint Cup standings, the highest points finish of his career.
“This is my best points finish ever and the best together with all of these M&M’s guys,” Kyle said. “I can’t thank everyone on this 18 team for all of their hard work this year. Can’t say enough about everyone back at Joe Gibbs Racing for giving us great cars, M&M’s, Interstate Batteries , Toyota, TRD (Toyota Racing Development). We had our best Chase ever, and we have something to build upon for next year.”
Final Sprint Cup Standings
|5||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||2,363|
Other Team Interstate Results
- Penske Wins Nationwide Owner’s Title Over JGR by Just One Point (NASCAR.com)
- Kyle Wins Truck Finale; Kyle Busch Motorsports Wins Owner’s Title (NASCAR.com)
The 2014 Supercross season begins in January, and NHRA drag racing begins Feb. 6-9. NASCAR returns Feb. 23 with the Daytona 500.
First in an occasional series on The Power of Relationships.
Everyone knows our batteries last a long time. You know what lasts longer? The relationships we build.
Whether it’s our 22-year racing relationship with Joe and J.D. Gibbs or relationships with Dealers, we believe in building on those ties.
In this ongoing series, we examine some of the relationships that continue to shape the Interstate Batteries brand.
The Joe Gibbs Connection
There are two people at Joe Gibbs Racing who know him by another name: Dad.
J.D. Gibbs was 23 years old and Coy was 20 when Joe made the jump from pro football to pro stock car racing. To make the jump, Joe was cold-calling sponsors, and one of his calls connected him to Interstate chairman – and future friend – Norm Miller.
“Our very first phone conversation, I don’t think I’ve ever had one like that. We must have talked for 45 minutes,” Joe said. In following meetings, Joe explained the scope: There were no drivers, no car shop and no cars. JGR, at the time, was just a dream – but one that Norm believed in.
Interstate became JGR’s founding sponsor in a gesture of faith – and business savvy. After all, many of the battery dealers Interstate had were (and still are) big fans of NASCAR and pro football.
Over the years, Joe and his sons learned the ins and outs of racing and how to run a family business. J.D. started out as a tire changer at JGR, and both brothers drove for the team. Today, J.D. is president of JGR while Coy owns and runs the motocross team, JGRMX.
J.D. has found several keys to running a family business, from using each family members’ gifts to purposeful communication. Communicating takes work, even if you’ve grown up in the business, J.D. said.
“Like any other business, success doesn’t happen by accident,” he said. “In addition, it’s important to make sure your children understand that just because it’s a family business doesn’t mean they are guaranteed a spot unless they work diligently, invest time and care for the business.”
Since 1992, JGR has run a car with the Interstate Batteries logo. The relationship goes beyond the paint scheme. When Interstate held an incentive program for its Route Sales Managers across the nation, JGR hosted the grand prize: a go-kart racing weekend with Team Interstate™ drivers.
And off the track, Joe and Norm’s friendship continues – whether they’re going on vacation together or working together in the I Am Second® ministry. And J.D. said that’s part of successful business, too.
“Finally, lots of prayer is always essential with any business.”
Interstate Batteries’ own Norm Miller was honored recently by the University of North Texas Murphy Center for Entrepreneurship with the prestigious Murphy Award for Lifetime Achievement in Entrepreneurship.
Previous recipients include Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, former Southwest Airlines CEO Herb Kelleher and several other prominent business professionals.
Norm is a 1962 graduate of UNT.
Watch the introductory video from the Nov. 8 award luncheon in Dallas:
Team Interstate‘s Matt Kenseth fought an ill-handling racecar Sunday afternoon at Phoenix International Raceway, and his rough day left him 28 points behind Jimmie Johnson in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship.
Early on, Matt worked the No. 20 Dollar General Toyota into the top 10 from the 14th position. Unfortunately, his progress through the field would not continue as the Dollar General team struggled to find the proper balance to allow the No. 20 Camry to race among the leaders. Crew chief Jason Ratcliff would call for big adjustments, but the issues persisted for the majority of the afternoon. Matt would eventually fall a lap down to the leaders, which limited his opportunities to make a late run. He finished the race in 23rd place.
“We go there (to the last race of the year at Homestead-Miami Speedway) basically without a shot to win,” Matt said in USAToday. “I’m obviously disappointed. On the other hand, I couldn’t be happier and more proud of my team. Man, this has been the best year of my racing career. It’s been an awesome season. You’re going to have days like this.”
Teammates Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin finished seventh and 28th, respectively. Kevin Harvick won the AdvoCare 500.
Sprint Cup Standings
|5||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||2,321|
NASCAR Nationwide Series: Kyle Wins 12th of Season
Team Interstate’s Kyle Busch won his 12th race of the NASCAR Nationwide Series season on Saturday and brought Joe Gibbs Racing to just four points back in the owner’s championship standings. Read more (USA Today)
NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series: Edwards Ends Season in 4th
Team Interstate’s Mike Edwards started the final weekend of the NHRA drag racing season on a strong note but ended it with disappointment.
Mike earned his 15th pole position of the season by dominating the qualifying rounds. In the first elimination round, Mike rolled over the starting line before the green light, resulting in a disqualification.
He finished the season fourth in points. Jeg Coughlin Jr. won his fifth Pro Stock title.
This week: The NASCAR season ends with the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Known at the time as “The Great War,” World War I officially ended on June 28, 1919 when the Treaty of Versailles was signed in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. The fighting, however, had ended seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect in the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, was believed to be the end of “the war to end all wars.”
“To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”
The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926. Sadly, 15 years after the resolution is passed, we’re once again involved in a World War. And men and women continued to faithfully serve our country to keep us free…with some making the ultimate sacrifice.
There have been other wars since that very first Armistice Day in 1919, but today, let’s echo the sentiment of President Ronald Reagan’s 1988 Veteran’s Day address:
“… in our hearts you will always be young, full of the love that is youth, love of life, love of joy, love of country – you fought for your country and for its safety and for the freedom of others with strength and courage. We love you for it. We honor you. And we have faith that, as He does all His sacred children, the Lord will bless you and keep you, the Lord will make His face to shine upon you and give you peace, now and forevermore.”
The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11 a.m. So today, as we acknowledge the faithful service of our veterans, take a moment at 11 a.m. and give thanks for those who were willing to put themselves in harm’s way to defend the freedom we enjoy.