This week we’re excited to welcome our newest team member, Samantha Hampar! Sam joins Soda Pop PR with influencer and digital marketing experience and a love for all things food & beverage. Read on to learn what brought Sam back to LA from Austin, where she would go with unlimited funds, and her perfect food day if distance (and calories!) weren’t an issue.
1. You recently moved back from Texas, what did you miss most about Southern California?
As an LA native, you really do take the weather for granted. I moved to Austin in an October and it didn’t drop below 100 degrees with 80% humidity until November. (This is partly where I get my love of sundresses.) Besides the weather, I missed my family most. When I ended up staying in LA for college (USC, fight on!) I promised myself that I’d move to Austin for 2-3 years at some point in my life to experience a new city and get out of my comfort zone. While it was hard to say goodbye to Austin’s quirky culture, outdoorsiness, breakfast tacos (someone say queso?), and extensive music scene, Dorothy has a point… “there’s no place like home.”
2. Describe your perfect food day from start to finish. (distance is not an issue)
I’d like to include calories as not an issue in addition to distance because I could live off of dessert and tacos alone…
Breakfast: Considering I have a Pinterest board exclusively dedicated to donuts, I’d start my day off at Sidecar with either an old fashioned or butter & salt donut. (If calories don’t count, why not do both?)
Second Breakfast: Breakfast tacos and queso are still on my mind, so I would fly to Austin for Veracruz’s migas tacos with a side of queso & chips.
Lunch: If I’m already in Austin, I might as well go to Elizabeth Street Cafe for Vietnamese food. I’ll have a Fried Egg, Crispy Pork Belly, Avocado & Mint Banh Mi, please.
Afternoon snack: Homemade Biscuits and seasonally made jam at Confituras Little Kitchen. With the best biscuits, jam, and unlimited coffee, I frequented this place way too often.
Dinner: Being that I’m Armenian, I couldn’t get away without saying Carousel in Glendale. I’ve been without great Mediterranean food too long while in Texas.
Dessert: I’ll let my stomach settle on the drive up to Santa Barbara for the original McConnell’s ice cream location.
3. If you had unlimited funds and two-weeks off, where would you go?
Italy and Greece have always been on my bucket list, but I’ve most recently been excited about the idea of road tripping across the US. The Southern Pacific route, following US-80, seems to have a taste of everything in terms of culture and physical landscapes, so I’d likely start here before taking on the great American road trip that hits 48 states. With unlimited funds, I’d stock my car with the greatest snacks, hit up the nicest hotels and glamping sites, and adopt a furry friend to keep me company.
4. What excites you most about public relations?
I love that what constitutes “public relations” is constantly changing. For example, while this is technically my first PR position, I’ve worked in influencer and digital marketing for 5 years, which is now more commonly coming under the umbrella of public relations. Secondly, it requires a lot of creativity to help your clients stand out from the rest, and when successful, it feels great knowing you attributed to a brand’s growth. In addition to being excited about PR, I’m specifically passionate about food and beverage, so being able to integrate the two together is a dream.
5. How do you seek out inspiration when you’re in a rut?
I’m a visual person, so I’m constantly looking to Instagram, Pinterest, and Designspiration for inspiration when in a rut. I also love walking while listening to music– it’s meditative for me. I used to walk 2.5 miles to and from work everyday while in Austin because it helped clear my mind. People think I’m crazy, but one day I walked from Union Station DTLA to Brentwood to enjoy the different cultures and unique neighborhood vibes along the way. It was people watching at its finest.