Staying positive during a pandemic
How Rainer Scheer makes lemonade with lemons
Rainer Scheer signs off on most, if not all, of his social media posts with “cheers.”
It’s a testament to his unwavering positivity and perseverance.
Scheer, founder of Chillounge Night, Florida Furniture Rental, the Sunset Lounge Experience, along with his wife, Patricia Filomeno, owner of Ink Graphics Media & Drone Videography Florida, make their living by bringing people together. During a pandemic, that becomes a challenging prospect for their business.
“It was crazy how we did things this year,” says Scheer. who adds that while things were shut down, his company invested back into the business by purchasing new furniture and focusing on engaging content via his social media channels.
Meanwhile, Filomeno invested in new camera equipment to help showcase their client work.
“People wanted something positive,” Scheer says. “We wanted to give hope.”
DINNER AT THE WAREHOUSE
In the middle of shutdowns during the pandemic, Scheer and Filomeno held their first altered event.
“Restaurants were closed and all of our events were canceled,” Sheer says. “I missed my warehouse.”
Scheer decided to throw a romantic dinner for Filomeno.
“I love to create experiences and I needed a reminder of how cool our LED furniture is,” he says.
He ordered takeout food and the couple documented the experience to share with their followers. The “Dinner at the Warehouse” was featured on WFLA-TV Channel 8 (News Channel 8) and was a reminder to people that while things seemed bleak and scary, everyone had the opportunity to continue making special moments. They wanted to inspire people to do it in their own backyards.
“Even at home you can create something,” Scheer says.
In May, Florida began reopening after lockdown, but many were taking all precautions and limiting public exposure and exposure to their loved ones. This was particularly heartbreaking as Mother’s Day approached.
Scheer and Filomeno took their LED benches out to Anna Maria Island and spelled out the words “Happy Mother’s Day” on the beach, for all the mothers out there that would be unable to see their children and grandchildren that day.
“We were sitting on our porch discussing how cool it would be to create this on our beach access,” Scheer says. It was an undertaking because the scale of the letters would need to be big enough to see. Working with the local police, making sure it would be allowed, they made it happen.
As people started to feel safe to gather wearing masks and distancing, Scheer and Filomeno began holding smaller-scaled events again.
They held Glow Table Dinners in Lakewood Ranch, and in St. Petersburg.
“Some of these people were out for the first time [since the pandemic started] and they felt safe. I almost cried,” he says.
Scheer says he stays positive by leaning on the supportive Filomeno and through his creativity.
“I just go for it,” Scheer says. “If you stand still the bus will go on without you.”