The ability to control fire was the first “giant leap for mankind.” More than 100,00 years ago (some scientists set it at more than a million years ago), our ancestors used fire for light and warmth and found that cooked meat tasted better than raw. There was also the social aspect of gathering around the fire, feeling safer in a world that was grim and scary, sharing stories that would grow into oral histories and forming the alliances needed to later establish communities. And through all those years, we have continued to gather around fire! Sure, we’re cooking hot dogs and S’mores rather than wild boar and grubs, but the point is the same. A camaraderie still results when a group is enclosed within the warmth and flickering light of a campfire. Now, thanks to Bryan Cantrell and Brent Davidson, we can enjoy a campfire without all the work and mess.
Bryan and Brent were two successful entrepreneurs when their paths crossed. Bryan had a thriving sunglasses business and Brent owned several brands of action sports gear. Eventually, they became business partners and founded a company to produce wax for personal care products. In the normal course of processing wax, there is surplus and there are mistakes, both of which get tossed into 5- or 10-gallon buckets. The buckets were fun for a while—monster-sized candles to use for tailgate parties and camping, but they were much too heavy and messy and the novelty soon wore off. Yet there seemed to be an idea lurking in there somewhere—one that surfaced because Bryan loves cookies. He gives cookie containers as gifts to his customers, and he keeps a few (or four or five) tins for himself. One day, he looked at his empty tins and realized that they were the right size to use for the scrap wax. Byran and Brent spent a few months perfecting the design and the packaging, and the RadiateTM Portable Campfire was born.
Now you can have a campfire that is not only convenient but healthier for you, your pets, and the environment. The wax is recycled kosher soy wax. Soy is renewable, burns cleanly and slowly and is carbon neutral. The briquettes are made from recycled paper pulp (the same material as egg cartons), and the packing material is made from shredded cardboard boxes. It’s also safer than other campfires; there are no dangerous embers spitting out of two-foot-tall flame.
Amazingly, the campfire is waterproof. If it gets caught with its lid off in the rain, pour off the water, light and your campfire is aglow again. In fact, you can re-light it as many times as you want. Put the fire out by sliding the lid on. When you slide the lid off, you can light it right up.
Bryan and Brent are really proud of their product, but if they had to pick one thing that stands out, it’s that their portable campfire is completely made in the U.S.A.