The Early Learning Village wanted to go big for Administrative Professional’s Day – limo big.
So school officials had their hardworking ladies picked up in a Charger limousine and taken to lunch Thursday at La Fiesta Grande.
Secretary Ann Smith, bookkeeper Jenifer Taylor and Family Resource Center coordinator Jill Payne make up an excellent team that helps the school run smoothly, said Principal Donnie Owens.
“We wanted to do something really special,” Owens said as he walked the excited bunch out the door around lunchtime.
“Mr. Owens!” they shouted as they climbed into the limo. “Look in here! Oh Lord, we’ve got a disco ball.”
The principal waved goodbye and ran back inside. He and Assistant Principal Billy Parker not only picked up the tab but also volunteered to man the phones and front desk in the meantime.
“Other years we did flowers and other things, but this year we wanted to do something a little different,” Parker said. “We wanted to let them get away and have a little break.”
He credits Owens with the limo idea.
“We’re so amazed that they did this,” Smith said munching on chips and salsa at La Fiesta. “It’s not amazing that they did something because they’re always appreciative, but that they put so much creativity into it.”
Owens and Parker gave the ladies cards Wednesday (the official holiday, which many still call Secretary’s Day) thanking them for their work, and in the letters, they revealed the special gift.
“Their letters were so kind,” Payne said. “And then they told us they were going to be doing this. We were so surprised.”
Lunch is usually a quick bite at their desks, so having a full hour to sit and enjoy grilled chicken quesadillas was more than they expected.
Their chauffeur was Rami Kalla, the father of ELV kindergartner Braden, 5, and the owner of Equestrian Limousine. Kalla had given the principal a free ride on his birthday, which gave Owens the idea to pay it forward.
“What a cool way to say thanks,” Kalla said. “I know each of these ladies, and they really do deserve the recognition.”