The Karma Car
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Regular customers of SymBowl may have already noticed a flashy new addition to the parking lot. Others may have noticed the “Karma Car” zipping around St. Louis.
Longtime customers may remember when owner Becky Schoenig’s brand new Ford Fusion hybrid was stolen from the driveway of her home in St. Charles three years ago. That could have been the end of it. But, what started out as a run-of-the-mill car theft turned into a viral news story three days later when it was returned with exterior modifications that were less than desirable.
In a spontaneous moment of whimsy outside of SymBowl’s Kirkwood location, Schoenig posed with her returned car, all thumbs up and smiles because the thieves had “pimped my ride.” The photo quickly spread via social media, local news channel 5 interviewed Schoenig and then Good Morning America was on the phone.
Life eventually calmed down for Schoenig and the car was restored to like-new condition, $5,000 and a few weeks later. Yet, transforming the car – affectionately called the Karma Car – into something more meaningful that would pay homage to her story has been on this entrepreneur’s mind ever since.
“Trust in karma pervades everything we do at Symbowl and represents the type of support we have received along the way,” she explains. “We use the highest quality products because it’s the right thing to do, we regularly give back to the community without any expectations and we trust that there is more good in the world than bad.”
Schoenig and her business partner, Gregory Owens, opened their doors with $300 in their bank account and it has been through this trust and the support of their customers that they have achieved success and expanded to three locations in just six years.
Coincidentally (or, more literally, it was Destiney), the opportunity to collaborate with local car-wrapping company, Vinyl Images, manifested at the perfect time. This spring marks the three-year anniversary of the return of the pimped out car.
Destiney Conley, owner of Vinyl Images, who also has a passion for healthy food and supporting local farms, was immediately captivated by the story as soon as she heard it. She volunteered to collaborate on a visual message that would convey the spirit of SymBowl to passersby throughout the city.
The car has now been fully realized as a vehicle for change and is ready for its next mission – spreading the message of caring, community and karma with Symbowl customers and through the Find Your Inner Flavor platform that connects people and engages in real conversations with others who see food as a way of healing.