Canadian Tire throws super-fan birthday bash

Craig Reid shows off his stylized Canadian Tire tattoo with the help of his daughter, Marcia Kent, during a birthday party thrown by the Nanaimo store Friday. - CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin
Craig Reid shows off his stylized Canadian Tire tattoo with the help of his daughter, Marcia Kent, during a birthday party thrown by the Nanaimo store Friday.
— image credit: CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin

Some guys are into cars or planes, motorcycles or boats, hunting or fishing, but Craig Reid is seriously into Canadian Tire.

In fact, for the retired RCMP officer from Qualicum, loyalty to the company runs so deep he even has a stylized Canadian Tire logo tattooed on his left arm and said his dream would be to spend just one day as a Canadian Tire employee.

Sometimes dreams come true because Nanaimo Canadian Tire store staff, family and friends rewarded Reid’s lifetime of loyalty by hosting a surprise 60th birthday party at the store Friday, when Brett Roper, regional district manager, presented Reid with a birthday cake, a framed print of the company’s first catalogue cover from 1954, a tour of the store, a model of a Canadian Tire truck engraved with Reid’s name and an all-expense-paid trip to the company’s national headquarters in Toronto. Reid was also made an honorary Canadian Tire employee for the day.

“Oh, my God,” Reid said upon receiving the gifts. “I’m lost for words, I have to tell you. This is unbelievable. Two thumbs up for Canadian Tire. Thank you very much.”

With presentations made, Reid, who now works as a bylaws officer in Parksville, got down to cutting and serving his birthday cake before donning a Canadian Tire shirt and setting out on his job for the day, greeting customers and handing out $200 in Canadian Tire money.

“We don’t often get a chance to do this,” said Carl Head, Nanaimo Canadian Tire franchise owner. “For 50 years I’ve been doing this and it’s the first time I’ve ever known someone to put a [Canadian Tire] tattoo on their arm.”

Reid’s son-in-law, Peter Kent, recalled the day Reid decided to get the tattoo.

“He went out to the tattoo place and he came back and we were all excited to hear what he’d planned and he said he was getting a Canadian Tire logo,” Kent said. “We just said, ‘Well, that makes perfect sense given the fact that his dream was to be locked overnight in the store.”

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