A B & D Tent Rental

Phone: 330-852-7000

Summer is almost here! Along with sunshine and lush landscapes it is the season of weddings, festivals, and a variety of outdoor events. Bryan and David Raber, owners of AB&D Tent Rental, have the perfect tent for your occasion. Whether you need something as small as a simple 10 x 10 or as impressive as a white, cathedral-windowed, 150 x 260, they can supply it for you.

Bryan, the oldest in a family of nine children, started in the rental business almost by accident. When his father, the owner of Oak Valley Tarp, was offered a tent for sale at a greatly discounted price he couldn’t resist. Bryan and his brother David saw the potential in the rental industry and what began with one tent has grown into an inventory of one hundred and fifty. Bryan manages the day-to-day operations with four full-time employees and several part-timers; his sister Kristina handles the secretarial duties. David assists where and when he is needed.

“What makes us unique,” Bryan says, “is we make our own tents. And we sell off our used tents every five to ten years so that we have better tents available to the customers.” This ensures that products rented from AB&D look fresh and new. With experience working in the tarp shop with their father, it seemed a natural progression to manufacture the products they rent to others. Bryan explains AB&D’s process of welding the seams rather than merely stitching them, decreasing the chance of leakage which would dampen a special event in more ways than one.

Making the tents themselves means they can customize their products to fit the needs of customers. “Breitenbach Winery,” Bryan says, “a couple years ago we made a purple and white tent specifically for them. We rent it out [to them] two or three times a year.” It is also available for other clients when the winery is not in need of it.

AB&D Tent Rental has been a part of area benefits, using donated labor to help set up tents which decreases the cost for customers. Bryan cites the Haiti Benefit Auction in Mt. Hope, the Holmes County Home and Rails to Trails as recent events in which they have participated.

One challenge inherent in a business such as AB&D Tent Rental is the unpredictable nature of Ohio weather. Although their structures can withstand most strong storms, Bryan acknowledged, “if it’s sixty mile an hour winds all night long and you’re not there to take care of the tent, it could be on the ground by the next morning. But it’s not like it’s going to fall over in an hour’s time.” He stresses that when attended by a competent crew during a storm, hurricane-force winds would be needed to collapse a properly secured tent. “I’ve never seen a tent blow down in my face. If you’re there when things happen, you’re there to fix it and that makes a world of a difference.”

A decision Bryan describes as “one of the biggest turning points for us in making our tents better,” was the addition of ratchets to the standard use of ropes in battening down the tents. This “makes the tent a lot tighter and a lot more steady in a windstorm.” After the total loss of one tent and the collapse of another during Hurricane Katrina, he tells how large stakes snapped and half-inch ropes tore. Their use of ratcheting since then has made a big difference in stability.

While AB&D has gone as far as Colorado to set up a tent, Bryan states it was for a family wedding and that such a distance would not be cost effective for a paid rental. They have traveled to Indiana for a farm show and he says setting up outside of the immediate area is not unusual.

AB&D rents chairs, tables, and lights as well as tents. When a customer requests an item not available through their own business Bryan offers referrals, assisting customers in finding what they need. He agrees one of the many advantages found in the Tuscarawas and Holmes County area is competitors working together to bring satisfaction to their clients. “You help each other out,” he says while stressing his goal is to have the best quality tents on the market.

You can find AB&D Tent Rental on Facebook or their website at www.abdtent.com.

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