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Your Stories: Terry Turner

9:29 PM, Feb 25, 2013   |    comments
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  • It's always a party at one local business in East Tennessee.  All Occasions is at almost every occasion in town and beyond.

    Tables, chairs, linens, plates, flatware, glassware, bounce houses, slides, popcorn machines, obstacles courses, dunking booths, even bunny costumes? At All Occasions, there is always an occasion.

    "We do about 4,000 events a year and that varies as to the size of the event," says Terry Turner. "That can be from a backyard barbecue to a Bat Mitzvah to an event for 3,000 people."

    But let's rewind to when Terry Turner wasn't owner and CEO, but a young boy growing up in Clinton.

    "I grew up working for my dad just about my whole adolescence. He was in the grocery business. We owned three pizza restaurants at one time," says Turner.

    He eventually got a job in the rental industry at a company called Party Rentals. "Chuck Rothstein started the company in 1983 right after the World's Fair," says Turner.

    At first Terry was a temporary employee. "Worked at the sales counter, worked in renting costumes actually. We had about 1,200 costumes at the time," says Turner.

    He worked his way up and by the time the company was sold to a national corporation, he became vice president of the rental event division, and that involved a lot of travel.

    "By this time I had had two young sons and decided it was time to be home," says Turner.

    He went out on his own and started All Occasions.

    "It was sort of a pipe dream. I always wanted to own my own company. That's what I grew up around and it just got a lot bigger than I thought it would and a lot faster than I thought it would," says Turner.

    And it kept growing. "It was almost overnight that we were twice as big as we thought we would be so we, 14 months later, bought the old company back," says Turner.

    All Occasions now handles thousands of weddings and other huge events. "We've been involved with groups like the Dogwood Arts Festival for many many years, UT Hospital, University of Tennessee Athletics, Vol Network," says Turner.

    Also two Super Bowls in Jacksonville and Indianapolis. And let's not forget about Bonnaroo.

    "Being involved in Bonnaroo is a big accomplishment because it is a local event that's gained national attention," says Turner.

    He has business on a national stage, but Terry values East Tennessee.

    "It's just a good place to do business. People, they are honest, they are loyal, and I just can't think of a better place to live or do business or raise a family than in East Tennessee," says Turner.   

    Terry Turner, the ultimate party guy who has a few thousand chairs to spare if you are ever in need.

    One of Your Stories. There's no place like this one.


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