Handlos Couple Receives Audubon Live Large Award - Waspy's Truck Stop
Waspy's Owners Doris and Lawrence Handlos
Doris and Lawrence ‘Waspy’ Handlos, owners of Waspy’s Truck Stop, were the recipients of the 2019 Audubon Live Large Award.

Waspy’s owners, Doris and Lawrence “Waspy” Handlos, were the recipients of the first Live Large Award. This was presented by the Audubon Chamber of Commerce.

The chamber’s annual dinner in February celebrated the community’s accomplishments during the previous year.

Award Echos New Chamber Slogan

The Live Large award corresponds with the newly developed “Live Large” slogan and logo for the Audubon Chamber of Commerce. The logo features Albert, The World’s Largest Bull. The statue is an Audubon landmark.

“As the logo has come to life, we have watched it appear on shirt designs, letterheads, personalized gifts, and more throughout our community. This new identity for our community has been exciting to see materialize,” said Audubon Chamber President Stacie Dreyer.  “Our goal with the logo is that it continues to be utilized by all and be seen as a refreshing new identity.”

Audubon Live Large Logo
The New Audubon Chamber logo features Albert The Bull.

At the annual dinner, Dreyer said, “When we stop and really consider the ‘Live Large’ slogan, we realize that these are just two meaningless words on their own. But when we put them together and look at the correlation to our community, the significance is a big one. Audubon County certainly isn’t a large county, but the hearts of the people that make up this community are ‘large.’”

Dreyer added, “We see it in the small businesses that continue to line our streets and all of you that shop local to help support their dreams. We see it in the hands of the people who are always the first ones to pitch in when a job needs to be done. 

“We see the dedication to ‘live large’ by the people who have planted their roots in this community and even more in those that have come back to their roots and  want nothing more than to see the success for future generations to prosper.”

To celebrate the “Live Large” slogan and logo, the chamber decided to present a Live Large Award to Doris and Lawrence “Waspy” Handlos, who “embody this slogan in more ways than one,” said Dreyer.

“Every community needs people who ‘make it happen,’ and the Handlos family is the perfect example of that. From their farming operation to the addition of Waspy’s, The Feed Mill, and Blue Grass Inn & Suites, they have made things happen here in Audubon,” said Dreyer.

Beth Handlos Wahlert accepts Audubon Live Large Award on behalf of her parents.
Beth Handlos Wahlert accepts the 2019 Audubon Live Large Award on behalf of her parents.

“Their generosity is exceptional, and they are among the first to help our community ‘Live Large,’” she noted.

Handlos Honored For Community Generosity

During the annual dinner, the Live Large Award was accepted on behalf of Doris and Lawrence “Waspy” Handlos by their daughter, Beth Handlos Wahlert, who serves as Waspy’s Chief Operating Officer.

“Waspy’s is family-owned and operated, and we really appreciate being recognized by the community for our hard work and sacrifice,” said Wahlert.

The Audubon Waspy’s location opened in August 2018. Wahlert said the family is often asked why they didn’t build a truck stop closer to Interstate 80, choosing instead to build in Audubon.

“We could have built closer to the interstate, but that wouldn’t have done anything for the community,” said Wahlert. “It’s good to give back and invest in Audubon.”

She said she always encourages those in the community to shop locally. She added, “We always appreciate everyone who comes in (to Waspy’s), be it locals, those from out of town or truckers.”

This post was written by Waspy's Truck Stop