Georgia Bennett, a Wittenberg senior, got a free beer in a Boston bar, but that’s not where her luck stopped. Bennett was later flown out to a mystery location to be a part of Bud Light’s campaign, “Whatever, USA.”
Bennett was sent on an all-expense-paid weekend in early September with people from across the country who were deemed “up for whatever” by Bud Light. But this experience had more humble beginnings earlier this summer in Boston.
Bennett was working at an internship in Boston when she met a Bud Light representative at a local bar who offered her a free beer in exchange for an audition to appear in their new marketing campaign, “Whatever, USA.” She was then asked a series of questions to determine whether she was “up for whatever,” the campaign’s slogan.
“When they asked what my favorite form of transportation was, I said a hot-air balloon,” Bennett said, who had never heard of the campaign.
She learned that Bud Light planned to take over a mystery city in the United States and send 500 people there for a weekend of fun to use the footage in their Super Bowl commercial. “It was like marketing on steroids.”
After returning to Wittenberg this fall, Bennett had all but forgotten about her audition in the bar. But last Tuesday, Bennett received a call that would change all of that.
“They said that they were flying me out to an unknown destination on Friday morning and that I should just show up at the Dayton airport,” Bennett said. “I thought I was being PUNK’d.”
Bennett was one of 500 people that was selected — out of the 150,000 people interviewed — to attend the event with a guest. The group was flown to Denver, then led to smaller Bud Light party planes. These planes, equipped with full bars, took the group to their final destination: Whatever, USA.
“The town, Crested Butte, had all the streets painted blue,” Bennett said. “[Bud Light] paid off the whole city: the cops, the restaurants, everything!”
Bennett’s favorite of the free restaurants lining the strip was one called, “The Buddy Bar.”
“Basically, they tape your hand to a stranger’s around a beer and don’t un-tape you until you’ve finished the beer,” Bennett said. “It was a great way to make new friends.”
Bennett and some of her 1,000 new friends, including Rapper Lil’ Jon, attended events in the town each night of the weekend. Some of the events included a 70’s-night with KC and the Sunshine Band, a rave with light-up vests, and a banquet that covered the entire street, all complete with free costumes, food, music, and, of course, Bud Light.
“I didn’t really know what I was getting into,” Bennett said, “but I’d do it all over again….How ‘bout next weekend?”