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Sprinter Van Contest Take 2

Our first try didn't work - so we're taking a different approach.

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Last year, Fast Company ran a competition called "Drive Your Business Forward." The prize was a customized Mercedes Benz Sprinter van. To enter, businesses were invited to submit a video explaining why they deserved the van. At the time, we were at the very outset of trying to figure out the National Tour and having an awesome van to drive around in would have been very helpful - so we created an entry.

Sadly, while we were named a finalist, we did not win. Two days ago, however, our Director of Education Lindsay Levkoff approached our videographer Gregg and said Fast Company was sponsoring another competition, but the entry date was May 1st. Could we get a video done in time to enter? Well, we thought we'd give it a shot...albeit with a slightly different approach. Check it out:



As it turns out, Fast Company made a mistake in their communication to Lindsay and the date for entry is actually May 31st, not May 1st. But, we kind of like our entertaining, although slightly weird, effort featuring SparkFun graphic designer Nic. What do you say? Worth a shot? We think so.

Comments 24 comments

  • pyrofx / about 10 years ago / 10

    The sky is your oyster!

  • Craig R / about 10 years ago / 3

    I think you would help your cause if when the narrator is talking about the people you will be teaching you run some video clips of some of your earlier classes that shows the participants learning and having fun.

    • Grant4 / about 10 years ago / 2

      This is a good idea. Just 5 seconds of video from previous classes would be enough to show that you are serious and actually do create a positive impact on the community.

      Other than that, I think it was great. Hilarious.

  • Member #24240 / about 10 years ago / 3

    Gotta be a winner! How could they refuse that? Hell I have a 90 Plymouth Voyager you can have. Seriously. It's yours. Come get it.

  • Member #382389 / about 10 years ago / 3

    sounds like you want some one to give you a free van...hay can you give me a free scope? no really i need a scope and could really use a free scope...so send me a scope....free...

    thank you

    • rstaph / about 10 years ago / 1

      Yeah why deprive some other deserving group of a van when you already got yourself an RV and can obviously afford to just buy a van anyway, if you really needed it...

      • Far_Seeker / about 10 years ago / 3

        When I viewed this video the first time, one of the associated videos was from the winning company. Apparently they already have a small fleet (just from their video I saw at least three individual vans) of these same vans. So whatever criteria was used to select the winner, inability to afford the van wasn't the most important one.

  • Phoenix123 / about 10 years ago / 2

    Ok I don't know if you are going to win the van but you made me laugh out loud several times - good job!

  • RyeMAC3 / about 10 years ago / 1

    BEST. VIDEO. EVER. "The sky is your oyster!" - classic. That needs to go on a t-shirt. Stat.

  • heffedb / about 10 years ago / 1

    You had me at the overhead door closing.

  • Maxwellfire / about 10 years ago / 1

    Oh my

  • Xrain / about 10 years ago / 1

    Well if you don't get a sprinter van again this year, a quick look on Craigslist reveals this: http://boulder.craigslist.org/rvs/3771025309.html

    Just paint it red and put a sparkfun logo on the side of it, and you now have a electronic education command vehicle. The thing has a generator, reasonably low miles and everything!

  • ArMaker / about 10 years ago / 1


    Dead link....so fast they are already gone!

    • chartle / about 10 years ago / 1

      I get a warning from Chrome that the page is being redirected.

  • Not going to give us the van? Yeah, well… I'm gonna go get my own van, with blackjack and hookers. In fact, forget the van!

  • Paul NZ / about 10 years ago / 1

    lol go for it I love it.

  • Member #102896 / about 10 years ago / 1

    Pretty hilarious. Your fastcompany finalist link is dead: https://www.fastcompany.com/1841594/sparkfun-electronics-boulder-co

  • Colin_C / about 10 years ago / 1

    I think this is great! You gave it the "traditional" approach last year...and now for something completely different. :)

  • andy4us / about 10 years ago / 1

    So the new one is better as an art piece, but apart from the spare tyre, I have no idea what the message was. Last years has a message, but obviously very boring. Although the message in the first says why you want it, and what you will do with it, it doesn't say how it will benefit the company. What does Sparkfun get out of the education ? A feel good feeling ? Or by educating more 4th graders today, it will provide a larger user base in 10yrs time, thus providing a long term growth plan ?

    • I have no idea what the message was

      "GIVE US THE VAN".

    • sgrace / about 10 years ago / 5

      I think it gave a message pretty clear. They are touring America teaching the teachers how to teach other teachers and students how to do electronics. The random scenes/frames of Nic is well... Just normal for Sparkfun. If you've ever been on a tour there during a nerf war... You'd understand.

    • TheRegnirps / about 10 years ago / 1

      The message is obvious, Sparkfun can not afford to rent a van and erect a new building at the same time. So, this brings up the bigger question. Is if the new building is going to be open source?

    • To be honest, we were having a lot of fun with a turnaround time of just one day to concept, shoot, and edit the video. We kinda know this isn't going to win us the van (though crazier things have happened).

      If you really want to see what SparkFun's educational efforts are all about, check out learn.sparkfun.com.

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