GREEN BAY — From beads to cheese heads, hats and sunglasses, the Aude family’s business, Aude’s Novelties, has grown so much since they started it four years ago.
“Four years ago, we started with a ten-foot tent over at the bar, we had just the cheapest of the cheap merchandise you could get,” said Chad Aude.
Now, Chad Aude and his father-in-law have two tents, one a 30-foot tent outside the Best Western, and says they just signed a sponsorship at the Resch Center sponsoring the tailgate party.
“We do training camp, family night, all the preseason and regular season games,” said Aude. “And hopefully post-season games.”
He says the idea sparked when his family was going to Packers games four or five years ago.
“We saw vendors lined up down the sidewalk selling merchandise,” said Aude. “Thought it was kind of a unique thing to get into, bring new merchandise to the fans that other places can’t offer.”
Aude says they try to keep their prices lower than what customers might see in stores and the tent caught many eyes Thursday during the first preseason game with fans stopping for a quick buy.
“My grandkids need Green Bay Packers sunglasses, and maybe beads and some pom-poms,” said Montana resident Tim Hetzel.
Aude says he and his wife can pay their bills all year with what they make during the season.
“I mean I do have a real full-time job as well but and so does she,” Aude said. “But this is where we make most of our money for the year.”
Soon his children will be old enough to help, continuing the grow the business and bring fans new and original merchandise.
“It costs a lot but it’s a big reward, you get to talk you know memories with fans and interactions,” said Aude.
While this is just a small family business Aude says they hope to be able to expand beyond Packers games and bring the business to the mall during the holidays.