Paul Friday, Farm Market Speaker


Paul's Farm Market Speaking Testimonials

Paul's down-home style of speaking to farm marketers about marketing their products is based on decades of experience. Hearing him speak in Nebraska showed me that there was much wisdom gained from those decades of dealing with the public. His easy-going style and bits of humor here and there made his talk both entertaining and value-packed. It was like a ten-course meal at the finest, well, um produce market!    

Dr. Desmond Layne, Horticulture Professor, Clemson University

Paul Friday was the recipient of the 2010 National Peach Council Achievement award and is a promoter extraordinaire. He ads a great deal of pizzazz to what some consider the rather ordinary process of direct marketing his home grown produce. In addition to being a first class fruit grower he has a natural flair for innovative farm marketing. He claims that this type of marketing is fun and results in profits that are more than double what most growers experience. His keynote address at the 2010 Western Colorado Horticulture meetings convinced me that direct marketing offers Colorado growers much farm market opportunity.   

Harry Talbott, Palisade Colorado

Paul Friday could teach a marketing class at the University of Washington where I attended graduate school. His ability to identify unique ways to promote his Flamin' Fury (R) peaches and his markets never cease to impress. Whether it is his $2.00 bills or the creation of the Bubblegum Plum (R), Paul has a knack for making simple things memorable and fun-and that keeps customers coming back for more.   

Pete Van Well, Van Well Nursery, Washington

I think Paul's farm market presentation was great. He hit on points how to sell and have fun. I think as a grower that we often forget about the most important item within our farm which is selling. Paul's philosophy is simple. Have fun with your products and make the customer remember you. I think the top hat, $2.00 bills and Bubblegum Plums do just that. Paul's presentation is very laid back and questions are always welcome. A chance to pick a person's brain with 50 years of farm marketing experience is priceless.

Erik Olson President of Horticulture Meeting, Nebraska


Paul Friday's 3 Session Farm Market Seminar

( first session )
Publicity, The Key To Marketing Success

Paul is the master of obtaining both national and local recognition for his various markets and often times at no expense. He says that free news articles draw much more attention to your business than paid advertisement. He claims that all forms of media are anxious to hear your story so make it easy for them, sending your your story to them before they randomly call your competitor. Repeatedly notifying them of what is going on at your place puts you in their front file and soon they are calling you for information, rather than you calling them as you have now become a self proclaimed expert in their eyes. He says that he can not think of another business that has this opportunity as the public is so interested in what we are all about.

( 2nd Presentation )

Paul Friday's Farm Marketing Q and A 

Paul passes out a random shower of single articles to the audience. Theoretically, all articles that he has written will have been disseminated amongst the participants. After 5 minutes of time is allowed for all participants to review their particular short article, a lively round table evolves stemming from the conglomeration of all of his light hearted writings.

Keynote Banquet Speaker

The Light Side of Farm Marketing

Paul delivers a levitated farm market presentation based on his 52 year collection of humorous true stories which are both entertaining and educational


Having Fun Farm Marketing

I have always felt that when you and your employees show the public that you are having fun doing what you are doing that your customers then have fun as well and keep coming back for more of it. The trick is to get them in the groove, your groove, and keeping them coming back for years.

As a teenager and young man I put myself through Michigan State University by selling retail on the South Bend In. Farmers Market. Soon after graduation I opened “Farmer Friday’s Market” on the Coloma Mi. exit of interstate hi way I 94 which immediately became a fun place, here are some examples of some of the crazy things we did: We had an intercom system and we paged everybody by code names such as Elvis Presley, Pat Paulson, the guy looked just like him, Wanda the Witch, she looked just like her, etc., When George Bush the 1st was president we had a sign over the broccoli display which said “Barbara likes it”, there was a roll of
toilet paper hanging over the tomatoes that said “Please Squeeze the Charmin, and not the Tomatoes”, when cucumbers were cheap we had a sign which read “ Pickle for a Nickel” and when the price went up, “Pickle for a Dime, Sorry it doesn’t Rhyme”. Having a bent on Halloween we had a huge mask by the front door of Bill Clinton, during his reign, with a caption saying “Our Scariest Mask” and had a classic convertible sports car out front on the lawn being driven by Herman Munster with Grandfather as the passenger and we had giant, comical, rubber rats mixed through our huge cheese display. When customers asked something like “Why are your 10 # potatoes $1.49 when they are $1.29 at the local grocery store.” then we would ask “so why didn’t you buy them there” and the response was “ They were sold out” then we always said “ When we are out of potatoes ours are 99 cents.” The customers loved this nonsense and from it and a lot of other interesting ideas such as a 2500 sq. ft. fully automated, year round, in the store, haunted house (scary only, not gory), a 1500 sq. ft. indoor golf course, a meat market, fresh bakery, 20 flavors of ice cream. We cut cheese from a giant 5000 pound wheel of cheddar. Another attraction was a large quality buffet restaurant. Our business grew from a seasonal market doing $40,000 the first year to a year around operation with sales of about $ 5 ½ million. I have always felt one of the biggest advantages we have as individual marketers over the chain stores is our ability to be different thus making it a much more interesting experience for the consumer than just going shopping for groceries. I strongly stress the importance of showing ones own i
individuality as an important feature of our retail markets.

 For the past few years, in my older age, I have been going to farm markets in several locations in the greater Chicago area. At our new city farm markets we stress top quality, flavor, product differentiation and fun. Our main attraction is Flamin’ Fury® peaches which of course is our mainstay, and we all wear Flamin’ Fury® t shirts. We pick them as ripe as they can be transported and give samples of them. Our other primary crops are blueberries and raspberries which we also sample.

I see

other marketers with a display of 20 or more items and I believe to tell the story, grab the money rapidly in a short time span, and do the right job overall that 7 items or less is more effective and in that manner, you become the peach guy or the chestnut guy etc. This, of course is the opposite of my big market along the expressway where I had lots of space and tried to carry almost everything. For fun I wear a mad hatter top hat. In the big city the media is always crawling around looking for a story and the goofy top hat helps to bring them in our direction. Yep, it looks like, once a marketer always a marketer. I can’t imagine totally giving up marketing, even in my old age.

 I am now 75 and just having too much fun sharing my experiences with others via my monthly column in the Fruit Grower News and the Vegetable Growers News as well as speaking engagements, just everywhere.


A Partial List of Paul Friday's Farm Market, Agritourism Presentations over the past 45 Years.

5  Times farm market speaker at the Ohio roadside marketing conferences

4 Times farm market speaker at the Great Lakes Expo

2  Times farm market speaker at the Western Colorado Horticulture Society

(2010 the Keynote Banquet Speaker)

6 Times farm market speaker at Michigan Certified Farmers Market Conferences

Farm market speaker at the Mid America Fruit Growers Conference, Nebraska, 2010

Farm market speaker at Lancaster Pennsylvania

East Michigan Farm market


Countless Rotary, Lions and other service clubs

Vocational Agriculture Teacher

A Dale Carnegie Speaker

Paul has lead a 1940's 15 piece BIG BAND for 15 years.

A very limited example of publications which have carried many stories many times about Paul's Farm Market and Agricultural Tourism Experiences

Midwest Living, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, AAA Tourism Magazine, Michigan Living, South Bend Tribune, Herald Palladium, Fruit Growers News, Midland Michigan Daily News, Grand Rapids Press, El Paso Times, Adventures Along the Lake, Kalamazoo Gazette,Journal Gazette, Mattoon Il. Tri-City Record and Michigan


Paul brings to the podium a fresh, creative, Michigan, educational and humorous presentation. He has over 50 years of farm marketing experience in a wide variety of locations, size of operations.


Just for fun, at his very first market he strung a cloths line across his checkout with small plastic bags filled with water and offered invisible gold fish for sa
le at $.79 / bag. Today he gives out $2.00 bills as change on a regular basis. When asked where he got all of those $2.00 bills he tells the customers that he prints them at night and this fruit business is just a front.

Paul is willing to speak about his very varied and interesting marketing experiences for expenses and a nominal gratuity. At the young age of 70, he enjoys sharing his optimistic, educational, creative and humorous ideas for the shear enjoyment of doing so.

Places Paul Has Spoken About His Flamin' Fury® Peaches

Hershey Pa, fruit convention, annually

Chihuahua, Mexico

Grand Rapids Mi./ Great Lakes Expo, many times

Peach Sponsors in Benton Harbor Mi., many


Michigan show cases in many locations

New Jersey show cases many times

Pennsylvania show case

Grand Junction Colorado

Nebraska City, Nebraska

Idaho Horticulture meeting

St Catharines, Ontario, three times

Clanton, Alabama


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