My background is in the theater as a professional singer and actor in musicals for the stage, as well as tech. On top of that, 33 years of television as an Emmy Nominated Editor for top networks; Food Network, Travel Channel , Discovery Channel and HGTV, to name a few.
Diane has a background in graphic design and is an amazing mixed media artist. We are the homeschooling parents of three, and all of them involved with Colorado Pizza Company, which was also started as a homeschool project that got out of hand!
My brother Shawn, a highly successful entrepreneur in aviation, asked if I had seen one of those ovens on a trailer making pizza in 90 seconds. After a quick google search, and some in-depth research, we came across the top company dealing with wood fired ovens…Fire Within.
I dream in color, or so I have been told, so struggles to overcome are better defined as stepping stones of various sizes in no particular order. I think my lack of patience was one thing I had to work on… as a visual and tactile learner,I needed to actually put my eyes and hands on something to fully understand it. From the naming of our company and discovering it’s purpose… to our four day culinary training focusing on the oven and everything a dreamer can do with it… the thrill was in! Seeing how far we could take an idea and grow it without losing touch of the reality that being still and listening before jumping in full speed is nothing short of wisdom. OK… we may have jumped faster than we should have!
Ours is a family business. The hands-on education that our kiddos have and are receiving, building a unique business from scratch and growing it into a thriving, sought-after success story, was as rewarding as it gets. Started as a homeschool project, making artisan pizzas with a mobile oven has now become a good source of income for each of them. It is truly an invaluable experience, and the older two have now branched off with small start-ups of their own. Proud parents we are!
We also find it extremely rewarding to give back to Veterans, Active Military, Police and Fire personnel. These folks are blessed with a free pizza, and their response has often been, “Who does that?” As business grew, the rolling kitchen that pulls our oven blew it’s engine. Literally out of the woodwork came over 75 people who teamed up to get us back on the road to making pizzas. In three weeks! We were totally blessed by that because this business was now our only source of income. Of course, as questions came up having to do with the oven, recipes and the running of the basic wood fire business, Fire Within became our go-to team. From their Wood Fire University, to frequent calls of encouragement from owner Ajith – everyone was out to see us succeed.
We never thought we would be voted Number 1 Food Truck in Parker, Colorado, just three seasons in. Parker is one of the fastest growing communities in the United States, and number one is quite an honor. Our guests are simply awesome. We have followers looking us up online to see where we will be. We have made good friends. We have employed a team. And we miss making pizzas when we take a break!
We are out 3-6 days a week, taking Sunday’s off, with our strong season May-October. Our bread and butter are the fantastic breweries we serve, private catering with all-you-can-eat buffets, and large scaled events where our record is 348 pies in 3 hours using our little tailgate oven! Get good shoes right off the bat. Know that making thousands of pies takes a willingness to step outside of the box, be sore, be confused at times with laws and taxes, and that simplicity is the key to success. Hire great people you WANT to be with and bless, and have amazing family support. Finally a love for creating great food in a unique way will propel you into success. This business is half show, half pizza… so be ready for it.
Do not underprice yourself, or your business model. Let your menu change and adapt as often as your recipes change, and remember that a workman is due his wages. After you get some experience under your belt, know that at any event you participate in or any location you serve – you are not there for the practice. This is a business, albeit a fun and rewarding one. Dream big!