ABERDEEN, S.D., Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- L. Frank Baum, the literal man behind the curtain who wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, is probably still the most famous person who ever lived in Aberdeen, South Dakota. It's been said that his description of Kansas in the legendary novel was based on his experiences living there in the late 1800s. But with the wild success of his annual Smile Palooza event – an event one local paper called "South Dakota's version of Disney World," now in its 7th year - Dr. Darold Opp is making a powerful bid to become #2.
Since launching Advanced Family Dentistry in 1984, Dr. Darold Opp and his dedicated staff have dedicated themselves to providing the highest quality dental care in the Aberdeen, SD area. They do it all – cosmetic dentistry, crowns and bridges, full mouth reconstruction, implants, perio surgeries and teeth whitening, etc.
For years, he was just one the more dependable, popular dentists in town, a pillar of his small community happy with a moderately successful practice. Then in 2008, he had an epiphany. Realizing that moms make 92 percent of all dental appointments, he decided to revolutionize the concept of "family friendly." Suddenly, Advanced Family Dentistry became the place "where smiles and fun meet."
Launched in 2008, the crown jewel of this exciting "Heart of Mom" element of the practice is the annual Smile Palooza (formerly Miles of Smiles), a free, fun filled carnival-like event. During the three-hour event, held on a Saturday every July, kids of all ages enjoy free food and drinks, fun games, costumed characters (from Disney princesses to Marvel superheroes) and bounce houses.
Besides being an exciting summer community event, Smile Palooza – whose proceeds benefit Make-A-Wish® South Dakota - has led to Dr. Opp becoming the proud recipient of the Hometown Hero Award.
The success of the event and the media sensation it has stirred has also translated powerfully to an exponential increase in Dr. Opp's clientele. He estimates that over the past six years, Miles of Smiles/Smile Palooza has drawn a total of 25,000 people. From 2010-2012, the event generated 549 new patients in three years. In 2013, he estimates that his practice gained 235 new patients (who generated some $400,000 for Advanced Family Dentistry).
This incredible reciprocal result from this single annual event has contributed to creating a practice that is now producing $3.5 million a year. The big numbers are attracting the attention of dentists nationwide – and recently led to a dynamic connection that could help define the next chapter of Dr. Opp's life when he retires from the day to day practice of dentistry. His involvement with Jerry Jones, known as "The Business Anarchist" for his unconventional, sometimes-radical approach to creating, starting, running and selling dental offices and other businesses, is leading to a wealth of exciting new opportunities as an author, speaker, marketing entrepreneur and philanthropist.
Dr. Opp recently launched his new and exclusive information marketing business program, which currently has multiple clients; his goal is to develop it on a national level. In February, he was one of three finalists for GKIC Marketer of the Year. GKIC is the worldwide leader in providing information marketing and training for entrepreneurs.
He also includes a chapter on the Smile Palooza phenomenon as a key marketing event in Jones' new book The Definitive Guide To Dental Practice Success: Time-Tested Secrets To Attract New Patients & Retain Your Existing Patients. Dr. Opp will also contribute a similar chapter to a business anthology featuring renowned motivational speaker and bestselling author Brian Tracy.
Though Dr. Opp insists he and his wife Pamela are essentially private people, they work regularly with charitable organizations such as WorldVision and WorldHelp, charities which help meet the needs of third-world children and their families.
The organization that is dearest to their hearts is AFE (Amor Fe Esperanza) (www.afehonduras.org), a Honduran led project founded in 2001 that shares, as per its name, love faith and hope with the children of the Tegucigalpa Garbage Dump. Its goal is to break the cycle of poverty, allowing the children to become agents of transformation in Honduras.
SOURCE Dr. Darold Opp