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Darrick Farr — Rental Management's 2023 '12 to Watch Under 40'

By Brock Huffstutler

August 23, 2023

Darrick Farr

Darrick Farr, 33, general manager, A1 Party and Event Rental, Columbia, Mo., has a passion for what he describes as “helping all of mid-Missouri create the perfect event with the right rentals.” But a rental career was not always part of his professional plans.

“I was at Mizzou [University of Missouri] getting a master’s degree in public health in 2013. A buddy worked for A1, and I came on board with the company part time just to help pay for college. Two years later, I had worked my way up to general manager,” he says.

College money may have brought Farr into event rentals, but what made him stay? “I saw an opportunity to grow our company and our owner is fantastic about letting our staff do just that,” he says. “Working for a small business cuts out the red tape and lets us have fun together while working hard.”

Farr and his team of 11 employees — 10 full time and one seasonal — service weddings, corporate shindigs and other events in A1 Party and Event Rental’s market. “We are in a town of about 100,000 and service a large rural population within 1.5 hours of our store,” he says. When asked what he considers a key accomplishment so far in his career, Farr says it has been “modernizing our labor. When I started, we were driving stakes by hand, using dollies to move everything heavy, and using the wrong trucks and trailers to transport items. Now we have gas stake drivers, powered dollies, multiple Tent Oxs, and beautiful, strong trucks and trailers. Having the right equipment lets us be incredibly efficient and not ruin our backs.”

That kind of concern for his colleagues’ well-being is at the heart of what Farr loves most about his job: “The people I get to work with,” he says. “I hated getting up and going to the job I had before this. I’ve been here for over 10 years and have never dreaded going to work. We have a fantastic team and it’s so much fun to tackle every aspect of a rental store with them.”

In fact, “fun” is at the core of Farr’s message to those in the industry looking hard for new recruits. “Sell fun,” he says. “We get to have fun, use fun equipment to make our jobs easier and the best part is executing flawless events that only happen once for many of our customers. It’s easy to take pride in a career when you get to actively make other people’s events amazing.”

In 2021, Farr was asked to join the ARA of Missouri board of directors to bring a younger perspective to the team. He feels the experience has “helped me learn how boards work and see that side of planning events and getting other stores active because there are many things ARA does that are not taken advantage of.”