Spirit of America at the White House

Posted on July 07, 2020 | 3 Comments

Texas Timber Visits the White House

June 22nd was just a normal Monday until Joe received a call saying we had been invited to an event at the White House!  It was so out of the blue, at first we thought it wasn't a legitimate phone call.  But this was not a joke; we had been selected as one of eight companies to participate in the Spirit of America event which features American-made products.  And as part of the event we would have a meet and greet opportunity with the President of the United States!

For us, this was not about politics.  It doesn’t matter whom you vote for. This was our opportunity to highlight the fact that all of our bats are made in the U.S.A. We would have a chance to be surrounded by other companies who share a similar philosophy.  And it was our chance to visit the White House, not on a tour, but as a guest. 

The event was scheduled for July 2nd which meant we only had a little over ONE week to prepare.  How could we pull this all together?  Could we create a table display worthy of the White House in such a short amount of time?  So many risks were looming…the Covid-19 pandemic in full swing, continued protests over racism, a tense political environment, etc. But big opportunities don’t often come without risk.  So, we decided this was a once in a lifetime chance we could not refuse! 

We packed and re-packed our personal items and company display materials multiple times to figure out how to get them all on the plane without going over the weight limit, and we had an uneventful flight to Washington D.C.

Thursday, July 2nd – Spirit of America event day! We woke up at 5:45 a.m. (which felt like 4:45 a.m. Central time) but we were too excited and nervous to be tired.  Fortunately, Aimee’s sister (Allison) lives in the D.C. area and offered to drive and attend with us, which was a huge help!

The first step was driving through security. The Secret Service Police Vehicle Inspection Team and bomb sniffing K-9 dogs thoroughly checked our car while we stood to the side.  Every door, and even the hood of the car, was opened and searched. Good to know they are thorough at their job!  Next was a pedestrian security check that included an x-ray machine and another K-9 dog team before we were allowed into the White House for Covid-19 testing.




Covid tests were administered in comfortable chairs with the presidential seal.  All our tests came back negative, thank goodness!

Time to set up!  We were escorted down a beautiful hallway with red carpet (the same hallway President Trump had just used when we first arrived).


The event was hosted in the Entrance Hall, located between the State Dining Room and the East Room. Several companies had already set up, but our table was bare and our display bags were nowhere to be seen.  We were assured the Secret Service would be arriving soon with all of our things, so we waited. It was probably only ten minutes but it felt like an eternity. Luckily, we were able to set up in plenty of time and even had time to walk around and to talk with some of the other attendees.




The President was scheduled to arrive around 11:30 a.m., so by around 11:15 a.m. the media presence increased considerably.

Our hearts raced a little faster as the elevator doors opened and President Trump walked into the room and started talking to one of the companies on the other side of the hallway. We didn’t know how much time he would spend with each group, but he took a genuine interest in each company and asked several questions.  As he made his way down the line, our nerves started to set in, but so did the excitement.


And then it was our turn!  President Trump walked up and started asking about our bats and the type of wood we use.  He was engaging, gracious and kind. It wasn’t long before he decided to grab a couple of our bats and start swinging them around.  We heard a flurry of clicking cameras coming from the media, but we were so focused on answering President Trump’s questions, we didn’t pay too much attention.  We thought to ourselves, hopefully there would be at least one good shot of the president swinging our bat.  Little did we know what was actually happening during our conversation with the President.


POTUS swinging a 20 year old ash bat in half coat pecan color stain.

POTUS swinging a personalized maple bat with a cherry barrell and black handle.

It was time for us to take our assigned seats and listen to President Trump’s remarks.  When we sat down, Allison said, “You guys were on TV!”  We were shocked because we had no idea our conversation with the president was broadcast live!  The president gave his remarks on the importance of American-made products and highlighted some recent job report information.  It felt surreal sitting just a couple of chairs away from the podium as he spoke. 


The Spirit of America wrapped up and we began to take down our display. As we were doing so, several White House staffers came up and showed us that the picture of the President swinging our bat was already being circulated on Twitter and Instagram.  That evening we saw ourselves on the national Nightly News, TMZ Sports, and the BBC.  Several people forwarded other news articles with our picture. We are so grateful and honored to have our “moment” captured in time!

As much as we wanted to linger and explore the White House, it was time for us to go.  We rolled our bags down some stairs and through a hallway where foreign dignitaries are welcomed when they visit. We turned in our visitor badges and walked out the gate. 

It was truly a privilege to participate in an event highlighting American-made products.  We are forever grateful to President Trump and the White House staff for extending the invitation to Texas Timber.



Below is a list of the other companies who participated in Spirit of America 2020.  These are all great companies and we can’t recommend them enough!









    What an awesome experience! Kansas Proud!

    Posted by Sandy Witsman on July 08, 2020

    What an awesome experience! Kansas proud!

    Posted by Sandy Witsman on July 08, 2020

    We are so over-the-moon proud of you both and your company! Thank you for this awesome write-up of this most amazing experience.

    Posted by Andrea Szewko on July 08, 2020

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