Meet Our Event Mastermind
*Please read in your best Julia Sugarbaker accent. Preferably aloud*
Six-year-old Emily Gibbs begs her Mimi to put bright pink Avon blush on her cheeks and a little lipstick. She puts on some heels and a dress that’s four sizes too big and then proceeds to make her way to her classroom. Her audience of teddy bears is sitting listening to her teach a lesson on the proper way to be a classy lady, but right as she’s fixin’ to start her next lesson it starts pouring rain so she dismisses class and trades in her heels for some bright red rain boots and goes arrowhead hunting while singing at the top of her lungs.
Decades later Emily still dabbles in a little bit of everything and she definitely still wears bright pink blush and lipstick. She can turn an old outfit from a thrift store into something runway ready in minutes, plan a spontaneous weekend trip as she’s packing, and we’re fairly certain she could be a Broadway star. She’s been throwing events together since she was little and making sure the people around her are just as happy as she is. Whether she’s planning your baby’s first birthday, your best friend’s twenty-first, or your corporate Christmas party it’s going to be stress-free and a hit. After talking to Emily you feel like you have a new friend and you may possibly learn a new fact about Dolly Parton.
Meet Our Lady of the Ledgers
April sat beside CEO: Bethanne Mashburn at a baseball game and immediately they became besties. April would drive by and check on The Factory while Bethanne was building it, then one day she just started coming by to help. April’s been on the team ever since. She’s never met a stranger and she’s always been a social butterfly. In fact, when she was in first grade she had a C in conduct because she was always chit-chatting in class. Her teacher moved her to the front of the classroom and April raised her hand and said: “Mrs. Nichols, I know you moved me so I wouldn’t talk, but I have friends up here too.”
If you ask April what she does at work she’ll tell you she does the finances, but if you ask her team, they will tell you she’s much more than that. She’s the glue that keeps them together. She’s the type of person you drift toward. She accepts all kinds and just makes you feel a little more comfortable to be exactly who you are. In her spare time, you’ll catch her doing something that seems a little risky, dreaming that she can fly, or playing in water whether that be the water hose in her backyard or in the ocean.
Meet Our Mixologist
Imagine this: you’re eight years old and invited to the birthday party of a bold and bossy girl. She’s a firecracker, but she has super cool hair and says some funny stuff, so you go with it. You get dropped off and you walk to the front door. Amari greets you with a big smile and tells you to sign your name in her royal blue polka-dotted notebook. You go inside to play and she takes notes on what each person plays with. It was kind of weird, but you had fun, so you guys stay friends.
Since Amari was 15, she’s been working. Whether it was shampooing hair at a salon, cleaning, babysitting, modeling, doing inventory (since she’s always kind of liked that), or checking you in to jump at The Factory. She never sits still. Her independence and drive are traits that run deep in her veins and she’s one of those girls who can hold her own. Amari’s all over the place, a little scatter-brained, and to be frank, she’s messy, just like all the other great artists. Her hair is as big as her personality and she is not changing who she is for anyone. She’s a licensed cosmetologist, can make a mean cocktail, has awful handwriting, and sprinkles creativity wherever she goes. Her bold confidence invites you in and keeps you wanting to come back, have a drink, and talk to your friend with cool hair.
Meet Our General Manager
Walk into Dallas’ office and you can catch a glimpse of who she is. She has notebooks with her ideas stacked in bookshelves. Across from her desk is a big map with pins scattered from her hometown; where her heart lives in Gadsden AL. all the way to Japan where she learned to make her way through a subway with nothing written in English. Beside her desk is a dream board covered in handwriting that started neat and soon got messy, and she has way too many pens to count. It’s evident that she’s a little “extra” to say the least.
Dallas has been bossing people around since she can remember. From making chore lists for her siblings at 9, to employee training when she was 16, to project managing at 19, she has always been a go-getter. She’s curious and has to know the why’s. When she was four years old her mom would yell at her to put her shoes on the right feet and she would respond and explain they felt better on the wrong feet. (Although, she has admitted they did not feel better she wanted to do things her way). Dallas’ favorite thing about her job is bringing people together whether it be her employees or customers. She cultivates an atmosphere of positivity and ambition to everyone whether it’s in her office, her house, or Zumba class. She has a bold confidence that invites others to participate, rather than be intimidated. Don’t let her cheerful demeanor fool ya. She is fiercly determined to reach her goals and loves nothing more than checking items off of her to-do list.
Meet Our CEO
At 17 years old Bethanne Mashburn packed all of her belongings in her car and with her paper map in hand took off by herself across the United States to attend Brigham Young University. As she pursued a degree in Secondary Education, she had no idea that instead of teaching history to high school students that one day she would be creating business plans on napkins and giving life to entertainment businesses.
Her projects were never just pipe dreams. Feeding off the ingenuity and creativity of her dad, Bethanne pulled out the entrepreneur from within and rolled with it. With sparkles in her eyes she put a business plan on the closest sketch paper she could find and dove head-first with nothing but a couple trampolines and a big dream to land on. Once the vision was born there was absolutely no stopping her. And she’s not stopping here; her dreams grow bigger every day.
Even as a child Bethanne has never settled for anything average. The vision might not have always been, bowling lanes, trampoline parks, and arcades, but whether she was cheer captain in high school or teaching English to a classroom in China, she creates an atmosphere where people want to be. Her enthusiasm drives people to be a little better than they were the day before. Her awards, business and individual, tell you she goes above and beyond in everything she does, but if you really want to know what kind of person she is ask her husband, kids, employees, and friends. Bethanne brings a sense of life to the little things and provides a place for her community to come together and be themselves whether they are jumping, bowling, or just need to come sit on her couch.
Meet Our Food Guru
Jodie has been on the sidelines his entire life. Since he was five years old, he’s been adding his part to a team. Growing up, the sidelines meant at a football or baseball game. His dad would pack the truck full of kids that needed a ride to practice. When he wasn’t at practice, he was on the kitchens sideline helping make Bundt cakes. Five-year old Jodie, who was too short to see the counter, would grab a stool and help his Mother make these cakes. This is when the passion for making delicious foodstuff started, and it hasn’t slowed down since.
As an eighteen-year-old, Jodie submerged himself into the food business. He climbed up the ladder and was managing restaurants left and right. He’s always had a niche of coming in and making things a little better than they were before. In 1997, he decided it was his time to get off the sidelines and opened his first location at Tannehill State Park. Soon after, the building burned in a tragic fire. Jodie didn’t throw in the towel and quit; his resilience grew. When the going gets tough the tough get going. Since then Jodie has opened five successful restaurants and catered more than a thousand events. Jodie has numerous awards in the food industry, but that’s not what he’s in it for. He has always loved teamwork. His passion is to help people grow, whether that’s feeding them a good ole nutritious burger or mentoring his employees and helping them fulfill their goals. His food speaks for itself and his team looks at him like the head coach. Jodie’s in the people business and food is what he does.
WANNA KNOW A SECRET?
There are lots of little things at The Alley that remind us of the big picture of why we want to bring entertainment into the world. There are things that remind us of who we are as artists and the small things that inspire us. We’re going to let you in on what those things are and what they mean, if you’ll pinky promise that you won’t tell anybody.
Mall entrance: When you walk in you might be wondering if you are coming to the right place. With speak-easy vibes you have to make your way through “Dan’s Bowling” to find The Alley. Dan is the guy who started it all. He’s the original manufacturer of fun and without him there would be no Alley. We give a nod to him here.
Equipment in Dan’s Bowling: On display we have Gadsden’s OG bowling alley equipment from Rainbow Lanes. We pay our tribute to our
entertainment predecessors that paved the way before us.
The Tree: This is our tree of life. It represents togetherness and connection and is a reminder that you are never alone in this big world. Everyone who comes to hang out at The Alley has a branch on our tree.
31AJ559: When Bethanne and her siblings were young her dad told them if they could remember the license plate in front of them for a year he would give them $1000. Over 30 years later everyone in the family can still recite it. It has even been passed down to the grandkids. It’s hidden in The Alley. Can you find it?
Alleyways: The inspiration for the look of The Alley came when dad, daughter, and grand-daughter explored Tokyo’s alleyways on a high school graduation trip. Walking through Tokyo at midnight they decided that the bowling alley they were building at home had to look like a big city alley.
Associated Tool Ghost Sign- Associated Tool was a business built by Bethanne’s father and grandfather in the early ’80s. The building changed hands but was finally bought by Bethanne’s dad and is now home to her first brainchild, The Factory, a local trampoline park. Her father and grandfather are the two biggest influences in her life and why she does what she does.
Bar quote: “We’re all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”
To us this means that we are all living life with struggles, but you can choose to look at the good (the stars). We want you to look at the good when you are here and connect with other people choosing to look at their stars. Life is not easy for anyone, but if you can come to connect and think about the good for a night, we did our job.