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Fri, Oct 06, 2006

Life Imitates Satire! Sam's Club To Sell A Citation Mustang

ANN Wants A Commission, Darn It!

We, frankly, still can't believe it... but it appears Sam's Club, one of the nation's largest membership warehouse stores, has taken one of ANN's farcical April Fools announcements to heart. The uber-retailer announced Friday it will make Cessna's Citation Mustang Jet available for $2,734,600 -- complete with a lifelong membership to the Club -- as one of its "Once-in-a Lifetime" packages for the 2006 holiday season.

That's right. The national warehouse retail chain is selling bizjets... as Aero-News eerily predicted last April 1. (OK, so we pegged another light-jet maker as getting in on this game first, and Wal-Mart was our store of choice... but that's still within the Sam Walton empire.)

The Cessna Citation Mustang is sold out until 2009, but the purchaser of the Sam's Club package will have the chance to purchase the plane just in time for Christmas, with actual delivery November of 2007. In addition, the lucky winner will have the opportunity to choose from a number of interior and exterior options to personalize his or her very own Citation Mustang.

But we're straying from the point. Did we mention Sam's Club is selling aircraft? Not even Neiman Marcus can top that.

"The Once-in-a-Lifetime packages are popular with our Members and highly anticipated," said Mark Goodman, Executive Vice President, Marketing, Membership and E-Commerce, Sam's Club. "Our Members have come to expect that we'll continue to leverage our buying power to offer quality one-of-a-kind merchandise, and experiences, which are sure to please that someone special at Christmas time."

The Once-in-a-Lifetime packages, available exclusively at Sam's Club, go on sale at the store's website the week of November 1. Pre-qualifying for the purchase begins on November 1. The first person to wire transfer the deposit to an account on November 9, 2006 starting at 12:00PM will become the owner.

A Sam's Club Business, Advantage or Plus Membership is required to purchase two of the luxury packages. Other packages offered for sale include a trip for four to Super Bowl XLI in Miami, FL, with deluxe accomodations and guest spots at Dan Marino's VIP Postgame party; and a trip for four to see legendary crooner Tony Bennett in concert in London.

But purchasers of those packages will still have to fly commercial... whereas the Mustang owner, of course, can skirt that entire experience, and arrive wherever they want to in style.

It remains to be seen whether Sam's Club will start offering other bizjet lines... but as we've seen before, stranger things HAVE happened.

FMI: www.samsclub.com, www.cessna.com

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