Step One Automotive Group has officially opened its new state-of-the-art Subaru dealership, located at 916 Beal Pkwy. To commemorate the official grand opening of its 14th dealership, Step One hosted a Grand Opening event on Thursday, Oct. 22.
The celebration was hosted at the new dealership, which was transformed inside and out into a dazzling event space by Showtime Events and TSC Productions. Before the party began, a multiple-chamber ribbon cutting was held outside on the red carpet with the Destin, Greater Fort Walton Beach, Gulf Coast Minority, Navarre Beach Area, and Walton Area chambers of commerce to officially welcome the new dealership to the community.
Local dignitaries and government officials were in attendance, as well as representatives from Subaru’s corporate headquarters. In order to maintain safe social practices, guests received a complimentary custom face mask provided by Frill Seekers Gifts upon entry while additional hand sanitizing stations were also dispersed throughout the event. Signature Catering of 30A served sushi rolled on-site while Dan Pettis’ food trucks catered various locally-source dishes outside the dealership. Guests delighted in craft cocktails provided by Cutwater Spirits and craft beer by Props Brewery while listening to music from Epic & Elegant Entertainment and live band, The Fairview Union, from Knoxville, Tenn.
Florida’s State Representative Mel Ponder blessed the dealership during the celebration before owner, Fernando Arellano, took to the stage to thank the crowd of 600 guests for their unwavering support of the company and to tell the story a local woman, Veronica Kostur, 16, and her Subaru. Kotsur was driving to college in her Subaru and hit a deer on a major highway while traveling 65 miles per hour. Although the deer caused significant damage to her car, she was still able to drive 100 more miles to her final destination. Kotsur escaped the accident unharmed and considers herself very lucky thanks to her Subaru.
“Subaru saved my life,” Kotsur said. “I will absolutely stick with Subaru – there is nothing I would change about the car, I absolutely love it and I am so thankful for it.”
Several local non-profit organizations were in attendance, including Alaqua Animal Refuge, E.O. Wilson Biophilia Center, and South Walton Artificial Reef Association (SWARA), as part of Step One’s dedication to the environmental preservation and sustainability of our local community. To help further their efforts and encourage their individual missions, Step One has donated $1,000 to each local organization.
“We are so excited to partner with these amazing charities who are so committed to protecting our environment,” said Step One Automotive Group’s Maureen Bierman. “They each, in their own way, make a very special contribution to this wonderful community.”