By Laurie Merrill
GCU News Bureau
It’s not uncommon for a crowd of 20 or more thirsty students to cluster near the Grand Canyon Beverage Company counter on the second floor of the Student Union, patiently awaiting their liquid concoctions.
“It’s been crazy,” GCBC General Manager Brennan Williams said one recent morning, when he was clad in a Havocs T-shirt in honor of that day’s soccer game. “It’s been like this all year.”
And at least some of the demand stems from GCBC’s newest product: Stampede, GCU’s own energy drink.
The 8.4-ounce purple-and-white cans – portraying a large letter "S" with sun rays and an antelope jumping through it -- have been racing off the shelves since their Welcome Week debut, Williams said.
“I think we’ve gone through 250 cases in three weeks,” he said.
Not only has the “grab and go’’ market been solid; students also are gobbling up the many flavored energy drink fusions. Of those, there’s no question: Strawberry and coconut is the top seller.
“They love it,” Williams said.
The idea for Stampede came about much like the concept that led to GCU opening its own coffee shops, run by students and alumni: If other companies could produce energy drinks, GCBC could do it, too.
The first step was deciding on the flavor, a process that involved four rounds of sampling by students and employees.
Of course, the can design is key. The big question was where the purple was going to be, and the idea of making a purple-and-white can in the same distressed look as the GCBC logo took hold.
What’s next, besides keeping up with demand?
A sugar-free variety with the same can colors – only reversed.
Contact Laurie Merrill at (602) 639-6511 or [email protected].