National Hot Dog Day is an annual event celebrated in the United States to honor the beloved hot dog. Established by the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council in 1991, this observance takes place on a Wednesday in July. For ITG, this day holds special significance as it embodies their company culture and provides an opportunity for the team to come together and celebrate their hard work. 

The Evolution of ITG’s National Hot Dog Day

Several years ago, ITG discovered National Hot Dog Day after seeing the holiday listed on a public calendar. One of the employees took the initiative to create this tradition, sparking excitement and curiosity among the team. The event originally began as a potluck where ITG provided the hot dogs, and employees brought the sides. Over time, however, the event grew and evolved into a much-anticipated annual celebration.

“The history was, I was looking at a calendar that had all these crazy “holidays”. Hot Dog Day was one of them – who knew?… and thus was the start of a new ITG tradition.” – Michelle Erickson, Claims and Compliance Manager  

Reflecting Company Culture

ITG prides itself on being a family-oriented business, and National Hot Dog Day perfectly aligns with this core value. This event allows the team to come together as a family, reinforcing their strong bond. By combining hard work with moments of celebration, ITG demonstrates its commitment to work-life balance and employee well-being. It provides an opportunity for everyone to unwind, have fun, and strengthen their connections outside of regular work responsibilities.

Rewarding Success and Appreciating Hard Work

“We’re better every day” is one of ITG’s core values, emphasizing their continuous improvement mindset. Recognizing the importance of acknowledging accomplishments, ITG embraces celebrations as a means of rewarding success. From the top down, the company values the hard work and dedication of its staff. National Hot Dog Day serves as a collective expression of gratitude and appreciation for the entire team, acknowledging their contributions to the company’s achievements.

Adapting and Expanding

As ITG transitioned to a fully remote work model during the pandemic, the National Hot Dog Day celebration found new ways to thrive. Instead of an in-person potluck, ITG sent out DoorDash gift cards to staff, encouraging them to order in and enjoy a hot dog lunch from the comfort of their own homes. Despite the physical separation, ITG embraced this challenge and happily shared photos of their own uniquely memorable celebrations at home, which fostered a sense of connectedness amongst all.

In 2022, the event transitioned back to in-person and ITG began partnering with a local restaurant called BossDawgz to provide a delicious spread of hot dogs, homemade chips, condiments, and more. This transition has made the event even more fun, interactive and inclusive. In addition to staff members, ITG has also started inviting local vendors to participate, extending their gratitude to all those who contribute to the company’s success.

A Touch of Nostalgia

To conclude the celebration, ITG brings in an ice cream truck, adding an element of joy and nostalgia. This delightful addition allows the team to relive childhood memories and indulge in their favorite frozen treats. The presence of the ice cream truck has become a cherished tradition, marking the conclusion of National Hot Dog Day festivities and leaving everyone with smiles on their faces.

“Over the past 7 years, Hot Dog Day has evolved into a summer tradition that everyone at ITG looks forward to. It’s a laid-back, fun way for us to recognize and appreciate our team’s hard work and dedication beyond the busy holiday season. What’s not to love about a Chicago-style hot dog and visit from the ice cream truck?” – Dan Kopp, CEO

ITG’s celebration of National Hot Dog Day showcases the company’s vibrant culture, strong sense of community, and commitment to recognizing and rewarding the hard work of its employees. Through the evolution of this event, ITG has adapted to changing circumstances and found innovative ways to bring people together, even in a remote work environment. By fostering a family-like atmosphere and providing opportunities for celebration, ITG continues to create a workplace where employees feel valued, connected, and appreciated.

Happy National Hot Dog Day from the ITG family to yours.