© 2022 Blue Ridge Public Radio
Main Banner Background
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Subscribe to BPR's Weekly Update

Asheville Inauguration Invite Mix-Up

“Plum Print, This is Keely, can I help you?”

When the phone rings at Plum Print in Asheville, Graphic Designer Keely Knopp, who also mans the customer support desk, is usually the first to answer.

Keely Knopp, Plum Print, “I just got off the phone with a gentleman who told me how excited he was about the inauguration and how he can’t wait to go.”

Over the past week, Knopp and her co-workers have spent a good chunk of their day handling questions from people all over the country who’ve received an invite to the presidential inauguration.  And that would make sense if Plum Print had been involved in the Inauguration planning, or had printed the invitations, says Meg Ragland.   

Med Ragland, Co-Founder, Plum Print “ The only thing Plum Print has encountered, related to the president elect, is that we did print a book, a child  had done a bunch of drawing and had written a story called Donald Trump’s red tie.”  

Ragland is one of the founders of the small company, which takes children’s art, you know those stacks of paintings, macaroni  and cotton ball projects every parent collects, and turns them into custom coffee table books.   She says,  the Plum Print phone number somehow ended up on the return address of the inaugural invitation shipping envelopes, turning their kid art publishing house into a temporary inauguration call center.

“When I asked how many of these invitations. FedEx told me I didn’t want to know, the FedEx contact told me, thousands.”  Says Ragland,co-founder, Plum Print

Plum Print staff have fielded all kinds of questions, everything from parking to the inaugural ball.

HC: “Does it take a while for somebody to realize you are not the right person?

Keely Knopp: “Actually some of them never realize you are not the right person, you definitely think you are in some kind of weird joke.”   

The Texas based printing company that printed the invitations worked with FedEx to fix the mistake and provided Plum Print with an inaugural committee phone number to share with frustrated callers.

“Of  course we were wondering when our free tickets to the inauguration for our troubles and distractions are going to arrive, but they haven’t yet!”, says Ragland.

And the mistake behind mix-up remains a mystery, but sure makes for a good story. 

For WCQS news, I’m Helen Chickering

WCQS reached out to Donald Trump’s inauguration teams, but has not received a response.