Dec 28, 2011 at 09:53 PM
written by

New Sponsor Locked And Loaded For Armed Forces Bowl

The Armed Forces Bowl is once again packed with veteran-owned and veteran-related sponsors. Among the usual suspects such as Armed Forces Insurance and Bell Helicopter is a newcomer with a clever name -- Salt Lake City-based coffee retailer Lock-n-Load Java. The small business, started by a veteran in search of a decent cup of joe, has signed on as a sponsor for Friday’s Armed Forces Bowl in Dallas, featuring the BYU Cougars against the Tulsa University Golden Hurricane.

Company founder Carl Churchill is a combat veteran with 21 years of service as both an enlisted soldier and officer.

“We are very proud to be a sponsor of the Armed Forces Bowl, with its strong military focus. I am especially proud that part of our sponsorship fee goes toward providing free tickets to members of the military,” Churchill said in a statement published by the hometown Salt Lake Tribune.

“Even though we are hardcore Ute fans, we are excited because this looks to be a great game between two prolific offenses,” said Churchill. “We had planned on adding hot cocoa to our product mix in 2012 but when we found out BYU was playing in the Armed Forces Bowl — we put that on the fast track.”

Lock-n-Load Java will be debuting its Red Thunder Natural Cocoa Mix and Green Thunder Mint Cocoa Mix at the game.

The company provides specialty grade coffee (and now cocoa) primarily to the military community worlwide, while supporting charities that help wounded warriors coming back from combat and the families of those killed. Though other sponsors will likely have more exposure, keep an eye on Lock-n-Load as this could be a great case study for how bowl sponsorship can work for small businesses, too.