Bethany is the Co-Owner of Moonfly Events. It is an all female, veteran-owned & operated company in Hampton Roads, Virginia. They showcase beautiful tents or special day set ups. Anything from Glamping (glamorous camping) to special date nights, Movie nights, birthdays, engagements, or just to make someone smile! They have a talent to decorate and design a special place to make a new memory. They set it all up and take it all down! All you have to do is show up and enjoy the setting!
Bethany’s husband served the U.S. Navy from 2008-2014 as an E5 search and rescue swimmer (AWS2) for squadron HSC-26 at Norfolk Naval Base. They met in Pensacola, Florida at Aircrew school in 2009, they were both stationed in Norfolk in 2010 and got married in 2013. Bethany served as a E5 Aircrewman (AWS2) at squadron HM-14 and her enlistment ended in 2015. They both served six years and enjoyed their time in the military very much. Her husband is now a civilian Maritime Officer and goes on long detachments on ships out to sea and far places, so they still live a similar lifestyle as before. They both served at Norfolk Naval Base and still reside in Norfolk, Virginia.
When did you start your business & what made you decide this career path? I left the Navy after my first enlistment ended and knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I had a creative side and I really enjoyed planning weddings, baby showers and baking specialty cakes for Navy ceremonies at the squadron. My call sign was “Cake Boss” to my fellow aviators. I used my GI Bill to complete culinary school and that career brought me to know my co-owner of Moonfly. She is also a Navy veteran and we catered many military related events through a local, Veteran-owned restaurant. In 2018 we dreamed up Moonfly as a picnic company that made special occasions magical. Since the creation of our business we have expanded that idea and our inventory to include glamping, movie nights, lady’s night, birthday parties, elopements, weddings and full service catering. We know our military training has helped us to become successful in this company because of our dedication and attention to details. Our significant others (both veterans) are also very much involved in the logistics and ideas of Moonfly.
Where have you lived and what has been your favorite base so far? I did basic training at Great Lakes, Il. (2009), Aircrew Candidate School and A-school in Pensacola, Fl (2009-2010), Aircrew training on the MH-53E platform in Norfolk, and my final duty station was at HM-14 in Norfolk. I went on multiple detachments to S. Korea, Panama City, Fl., San Diego, Ca. and really all over the U.S including Hawaii and Alaska. My husband deployed to Bahrain and the USS Wasp. I have great memories at all of the places I have worked at but I especially love the base facilities and built a network of amazing people right here in Norfolk.
What is the biggest challenge of being a military spouse and pursuing your career? Being a veteran and military spouse has had more benefits than challenges in me pursuing my career. For example, I have learned to stay up all night working and work seven days a week if I have to. Hahaha. My husband and I’s relationship has been filled with months long deployments and long distance but that has made me become more independent and have space for my creativity. When we are together we work on those tasks as a team. He is very supportive of my company and dreams.
What are your other hobbies? We have two boys ages one and a half and three and a half. Our hobbies together are playing monster trucks, ball sports and modifying their Power Wheels truck to go fast.
What are some benefits of being a military spouse as a business owner? A benefit I’ve taken advantage of to help my business network and grow is participating in Veteran/Veteran spouse and military-owned markets and group pages. I meet the most talented people that have their own businesses and I have a one of a kind rapport with them.
If you could, what advice would you give yourself when you first started your business? If I could give myself advice for when I first started my business I would tell myself to not give into the idea of competing companies and let that discourage me from starting off big. I felt like Moonfly would fail when other companies took our ideas and offered them at lower prices. I was jumping through hoops to compete although in the end they did not remain in business.
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