During the CMA Music Festival Fan Fair, fans of Blake Shelton got a special treat. Shelton's fans thought that they were about to go head-to-head in order to get a chance to meet the country music star, only to get a chance to play a game with the man himself.
The surprise was part of Pepsi's "Iconic Summer" program, where fans compete to win prizes centered around their favorite musicians and sport stars.
"This summer, Pepsi will invite consumers to make the most of the season," said Angelique Krembs, Vice President, Marketing, Trademark Pepsi. "We're excited to offer our fans so many opportunities to enhance their iconic summer experience."
With Shelton's love of fan engagement well-known, the star told Hollywood Life that he was thrilled to be putting his name to the initiative of getting people a chance to meet with their favorite music icons, and said that he believed that Pepsi's "Iconic Summer" program will live up to its name and more.
"I am excited to be part of Pepsi's Iconic Summer," said Blake Shelton. "Music fans are the absolute best and I am looking forward to offering up some memorable opportunities to them during CMA's Music Fest next month and throughout other events coming up. It truly will be an iconic summer."
Shelton's involvement in the contest itself was kept under wraps as the crowds attending the CMA Fan Fest were told that there would be a raffle to win tickets for a Blake Shelton concert later that night.
The contest itself was hosted by YouTube stars behind the popular PrankVsPrank, where viewers watch the couple constantly engage in physical and mental pranks against each other. Their antics have earned them the notoriety of being called "YouTube's Best Pranksters" by USA Today during their April Fools Day issue.
But this time, it turned out the trick was on the audience, not on each other. Pepsi asked PrankVsPRank to help pull one over on the country music fans as part of the couple's vlog channel, BFvsGF.
The contestants soon realized that something was up. The raffle turned out to be a "speed sketch" competition, where contestants have 30 seconds to draw a randomly selected topic that their partner must guess.
With PrankVsPRank joining each contestant as their partner, the 10 finalists then began to furiously scribble out whatever topic they had drawn from a cowboy hat. Soon, the contest was whittled down to just five people. By this time, a large crowd was surrounding the Pepsi Fan Engagement Bus where PrankVsPRank stood.
Then, right before the final round of sketches was about to begin, the crowd started to go wild as the chart-topping country star and judge of ABC's music competition show The Voice stepped out from behind a curtain, and began shaking hands with the contestants.
"Hello everybody, by the way!" said Shelton as he turned towards the cheering crowd. "Raffles are no fun. So here's what we're gonna do; we're all gonna compete in a game of speed sketch to win these tickets."
Then, the last five contestants got a chance to partner up with Shelton himself for the remainder of the competition, leaving him to guess the subject of the scribbles. While obviously nervous to be around the star, the contestants held their own as Shelton jovially shouted out his guesses. For those that couldn't get the right answer out of Shelton, he offered up a hug as a consolation prize.
Finally, one contestant named Hannah managed to beat out the final four and was rewarded with two tickets for her and her mother to attend Shelton's concert that night at LP Field. Shelton offered up hearty congratulations to the two with a hug before departing for the next show. "Have an iconic summer, everybody!" said Shelton as he waved goodbye.
Brian Penny is a former business analyst at Bank of America turned whistleblower and freelance writer. He's a frequent contributor to Mainstreet, Lifehack, and HardcoreDroid and an affiliate of Manduka and Tazo. He documents his experiences working with Anonymous, practicing yoga, and fighting the banks on his blog.
To see what else Pepsi and Mountain Dew are offering consumers this summer, check out the Iconic Summer website to see how you can get a chance to win a free iPod Touch, a trip to the World Series, or a chance to meet Beyonce backstage.