KANAWHA | The smell of popcorn filled the Kanawha Fire Station as more than 100 people settled in for an evening of laughs at the first-ever Business Feud.
The event, which served as a fundraiser for the Kanawha Youth Activity, was modeled after the popular TV game show “Family Feud,” but instead of two families going head-to-head for a prize, two local businesses competed against each other.
“It’s going to be hilarious to say the least,” said Michael Johnson, Kanawha Youth Activity president, welcoming those in attendance.
The event, set in front of an old emergency van, featured two games of five rounds with four businesses competing for the grand prize. Each team comprised five employees who stood behind tables in front of banners for their respective businesses. Kanawha Equipment was matched against North Central Cooperative, and First Citizens National Bank against Comm1.
Before the first game started, Johnson introduced the event’s special guest host Jared Wingert, who owns Mojo Productions with his wife, Katie.
“Our guest host was more excited about Business Feud when I told him about it than I was and that’s not a lie,” he said. “His dream job is to be a game show host.”
Wingert, who donated his time, said he enjoys helping out the communities that have given him so much support.
“One of the awesome things about being here tonight is we get to raise some money for some young people,” he said.
The catchy “Family Feud” song played while those seated — temporarily serving as the “studio audience” — clapped as one contestant from North Central Cooperative and Kanawha Equipment approached podiums where battery-operated buzzers sat.
At the podiums, Wingert asked the first question: “Name a place you visit where you aren’t allowed to touch anything.”
Answering with “Museum,” North Central Cooperative played, but after three strikes, the game was turned over to Kanawha Equipment that stole the game by responding, “Zoo,” drawing laughter and applause from the crowd.
North Central Cooperative won the first game earning a trophy.
After a brief intermission, First Citizens National Bank and Comm1 took the stage and continued the fun.
“What do you call someone who is careful with money?” Wingert asked. Teams responded with “cheap,” “tight,” “frugal,” and “penny pincher,” but the most laughter was earned by a member of the Comm1 who said, “Elderly.”
The second game was won by First Citizens National Bank.
Beverages and popcorn donated by the Britt Seed Company Westview Care Center, respectively, were available during the event for a free-will donation.
Johnson said he hopes the event can become annual and feature different businesses or fire departments from neighboring communities.
Proceeds from the Business Feud will go toward the Kanawha Youth Activity, an organization that supports youth in the community and organizes the city’s three-day Labor Day Celebration.
Marilyn Wheeler, a four-year resident of Kanawha,” said she decided to come out to the event with her friend Kathy Weidner because “it’s a community thing.”
Weidner said she wanted to come to support the youth,
“It’s fun,” she said. “I love that the money cycles right back into youth.
Johnson said the organization has started to do more fundraisers so it can provide more activities during the celebration for adults and children and eventually make it free for everyone.