Seen & Heard
As the competition kicks off, teams are showing their orange pride.
Whataburger has officially taken over Houston.
You can see it in the giant Flying-W signs throughout the George R. Brown Convention Center, the crowds of Family Members in orange playing oversized Whataburger-themed games in a break area, and by the random shouts of “What – A- Burger!” that ring through the hallways.
Here’s a peek behind the scenes.
Wandell West doesn’t have any doubts about who’s taking home the gold medal from the 2019 WhataGames competition.
“The gold medal is staying right here in Houston,” she says.
A first-time WhataGames competitor, West and the team have been preparing for the competition by focusing on making guests at their Whataburger feel at home. “We’ve been serving them their food just like they like it,” she says. As a bonus for this hometown team at the “Get Your Grill On” contest: “Our customers were outside the restaurant this morning cheering us on!”
Communication is Key
Competing in the “All for One, One for All” challenge yesterday, the Region 4000 MSC team credited communication as the secret to their success. “I guess you can say we prepped for WhataGames by doing what we do daily,” Lead Tech Jay Neidhart says. “Communication is key to being in sync, that’s how we’re going to win the gold prize.”
As Team 992 from Austin, Texas, was heading into the “Know Where to Be” competition, General Manager Mark Mortensen pulled the team together for a pep talk. “Let’s work as a team,” he says. “That’s what got us here.”
The returning gold medalists – Unit 4 from Kingsville, Texas – has been studying for months. “There are new games and new questions,” says Michael Ogden. “We need to be prepared.”
Team 508 from Fort Worth, Texas, came galloping into the Convention Center, one Team Member carrying an inflatable horse … and all of them in their cowboy boots. “We’re from Cow Town! We had to represent.”
Unit 661 from San Antonio, Texas, competed in three competitions on their first day – and then took time to parade down the halls of the Convention Center, chanting and showing off their “Guardians of the WhataGalaxy” banner.
Straight Outta Pace
GM Marsha Saxon and her team came in wearing matching “Straight Outta Pace” shirts and ready to make some noise. “We’re ready to compete,” Saxon says. “This is a great team.”