travel case

September 2015 Newsletter

September 2015
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Kurt's Corner

   All of us at XIKAR are sad to see summer go, but are thrilled that the fall season is upon us! Autumn surrounds us with cool and crisp weather (perfect for smoking!), bright and festive colors and one of America’s favorite past times: football. These elements helped to inspire the new 12th Man collection of cutters. These 2-tone Xi1’s are the perfect accessory to show your team spirit and enjoy the fall smoking season in fanatic style. And just like your undying passion for your favorite team, the 12th Man cutters are guaranteed for life!
   Wishing you a joyful and refreshing fall season. Happy Smoking, XIKAR Nation!

October 2014 Newsletter

October 31, 2014
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Kurt's Corner

I am in costume and can't be found, as I
"(cigar) stick or treat" throughout the neighborhood. 

Happy Halloween XIKAR Nation!


Kurt Van Keppel
President, XIKAR, Inc.


November 2012 Newsletter

November 2012
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Kurt's Corner

     Sometimes (mostly at cocktail parties), someone will ask, “what's your (company) goal?” It makes me chuckle to hear it – reminds me of “what do you want to be when you grow up?” I suppose the question really means, “how big do you want to be?” Unfortunately, I can’t answer that – I don’t set goals by an arbitrary figure that may sound impressive. Instead, I have set XIKAR’s goal to be about performance.

“Our goal is to be great at our mission, and achieve our potential through the highest capabilities of our people, enhancing and developing those along the way” 
     Performance means many things, for instance great function of high quality goods. It means creative innovation to answer the perennial question, “what’s new”. And, performance at XIKAR means providing extraordinary customer experience to both retailers and consumers. This is organizational performance, which we focus ourselves around and accomplish as a team.
     How then, do team members perform? What does it mean to our people every day? I love the Army’s slogan, Be All You Can Be! At XIKAR we work to develop strengths, and improve on our weaknesses. Back to the sports metaphor, the quarterback throws, the receivers catch, the blockers block. We don’t ask our team to do things that don’t suit them, and we don’t focus too much on improving their faults. Instead, we make sure they are in the right “position” and we ask them to build on their strengths.
      But it’s not enough to field a good team – if we don’t communicate the goals properly and regularly. And then, we must exercise the discipline to work them by priority, day by day, week, month, year. We take this work seriously and spend a lot of effort to plan the work and work the plan. In fact, we are right now finishing up the plan for 2013, and will begin to work the plan in January.
     We bring enthusiasm to our work, and look forward to presenting the results (cool new products!) But, we try not to take ourselves too seriously, by displaying humor and humility (interesting that both begin “hum”, like “human”). And at the end of the day, we give thanks for what we have, and what we did. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving, here's what I am thankful for at XIKAR: my team, who works hard at improving themselves and the business every day, my partners, who take the risks with me and apply all of their strength to our goals, and especially my wife, who signed up to be my life partner and supported XIKAR all the way!

I wish you a peaceful, happy and safe holiday season,

Kurt Van Keppel
President & Founder
New Hunter
Stratosphere Lighter!
     Fire up at any elevation! The popular XIKAR Stratosphere lighter is now available in a durable Hunter (green-colored) rubber body. This high altitude lighter works at up to 12,000 feet above sea level and is perfect for hunters with a handy lanyard, protective lid and windproof flame.


XIKAR U: How to cut your cigar with a Punch

     XIKAR President and Co Founder, Kurt Van Keppel demonstrates how to properly use a Punch to cut your cigar. View XIKAR’s three punches in 7, 9, and 11mm here.

If you are new to this hobby, you can visit to learn how to properly cut, light, smoke or store your cigars. 

Cooler Weather =
Watch your RH%

     The days are getting shorter, the mornings are a little more brisk and it's time to winterize those lawn mowers.  Have you been 'winterizing' your humidors?  Summer months allow us to get a little lax in how often we check our humidifiers because of all the humidity present in the environment.  Winter months, on the other hand, require a vigilant spirit to combat the moisture-sapping season ahead.  
     To fight the effects of forced-air heating and sub-zero temperatures, make sure you are educated about proper humidification.  While the two-way nature of XIKAR's humidity products is critical during the summer months to remove excess moisture, the large-volume and open-to-the-air attributes of XIKAR jars and humidifiers make them perfect for winter as well.  

  • Some humidification products work by waiting for moisture to be pulled through a paper and plastic membrane.  XIKAR jars and humidifiers allow our specially-mixed PG solution to replace that lost moisture directly into the air, preventing cigars from seeing a roller coaster of humidity levels.  
  • XIKAR jars and humidifiers are sized for your ease of use.  Why worry whether those thin envelopes of gel are dried up already when you can have a humidifier that can hold up to 4 ounces of PG solution that keeps on working?  When the fluid level does get low, just refill with our economical PG solution instead of throwing another humidifier away. 
Featured Product:
Ceramic Stair Step Ashtray
     From first light to the last ash, smoke in style with the XIKAR Stair Step Ashtray. This unique stair step notch design ensures that your freshly lit cigar doesn’t fall down into the ash prematurely, and that tasty smoke you burn down to the nub has a rightful place to breathe until the last puff.

     Perfect for the patio, smoking room or man cave! Fits 5 cigars and is available in white or black. 

Upcoming XIKAR Events

     There are a lot of great events across the country for you to check out. Here are a few coming up from our XIKAR retailers.  
11/23 Emerson’s Cigars 
in Virginia Beach, VA 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.

11/23 Cigar Warehouse
in Plano, TX 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.

11/28 Goodfellas Cigar Lounge 
in Mahtomedi, MN 5-8 p.m.

11/29 Finck’s Cigar Company
in Helotes, TX 4-7 p.m.
11/30 Fufiokas Wine Times
in Honolulu, HI 6-9 p.m.
11/30 Liquid Smoke/The Humidor
in Murfreesboro, TN 4-8 p.m.
12/1 Stag Tobacconist
in Colorado Springs, CO 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
12/5 Metro Cigar
in Germantown, WI 4-8 p.m.
12/5 Tobacco Junction
in McGregor, TX 7-10 p.m.
12/6 Emerson’s Holiday Open House
Event in VA Beach, VA
12/6 Jerry’s Cigars
in Tucson, AZ 3-6 p.m.
12/7 Humidor Pipe Shop
in Huntsville, AL 1-6 p.m.
12/8 Cigar Studio “57”
in Cumming, GA 2-6 p.m.
12/8 Briar Shoppe
in Houston, TX 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
12/8 Cigar! Cigar! Christmas Party
in Sugarland, TX
12/11 John B. Hayes Tobacconist
in Fairfax, VA 5-8 p.m.
12/13 Emerson’s Cigars
in VA Beach, VA 12-8 p.m.
12/13 Grand River Cigar
in Grand Rapids, MI 4-8 p.m.
12/13 Finck’s Cigar Company
in San Antonio, TX 4-8 p.m.

12/14 The Cigar Shop
in Biloxi, MS 12-9 p.m.
12/14 Cigar Warehouse
in Plano, TX 10 a.m.- 9 p.m.
12/14 Tobacco Plaza
in Great Neck, NY
12/15 CI Superstore Holiday Sale
in Bethlehem, PA
12/16 Tobacco Road
in Arlington, TX 12-4 p.m.
12/21 Don’s Cigars
in Phoenix, AZ 11 a.m.- 6 p.m. 
Happy Birthday Scott!
     XIKAR Co-Founder and CDO, Scott Almsberger celebrated his birthday at a Halloween-themed event in San Antonio, TX at Club Humidor. The turnout was awesome and they even surprised him with a XIKAR birthday cake. Thanks Club Humidor

Custom Travel Case for Rush Guitarist

     Below is a custom travel case we designed for Alex Lifeson, the guitarist for Rush. Alex had the travel case sitting on stage with him at the concert he played in New York City where Ron Melendi from De La Concha presented it to him.

Be a part of XIKAR Nation! Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to see daily updates of events, pictures and even weekly contests to win XIKAR swag! 

XIKAR Accessories by CigarBunch
Watch full review

Xi Cutters with Lighters Direct
Watch full review

Tech Lighters with Lighters Direct
Watch full review

Xi2 Cutter with The Cigar Crook
Watch full review

XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame

     The XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame Award is designed to recognize an individual who has demonstrated exceptional support and commitment of the XIKAR organization. Nominees are selected based on their affiliation with XIKAR plus their passion and commitment for the cigar industry.

Carolee Martin
Fraser Monk
Jeff McDowell
Robbie Morton
Daniel Dwyer
Jay Bitzer
Michael “Moe” O’Donovan

Each year, four individuals are inducted into the XIKAR Hall of Fame. The next inductee will be announced in December. All retailers and consumers can submit their nominees to XIKAR at


Manliest Meal Winner: 
Congratulations to the winner of an X8 Carbon Fiber Cutter, Russ Page! He sent in the manliest meal celebrating National Men Make Dinner Day on November 1st!
Here is Russ Page’s winning entry:
“Beef Stew? More like MEAT EXPLOSION!!! I have had this crock filled with the best potatoes, babiest of carrots, stalkiest of the celery, some of the rarest cuts of beef, and strips of smoked bacon. Did I mention I paired the beef with VENISON CHUNKS!?!? I did. That is not a regular sized spoon you see, it is Thor's Hammer melting into the stew after he was defeated by the overbearingly manly aroma that exudes from this primal crock. But seriously it’s delicious.”

Here are a couple other great entries...

James Miller

George Krichbaum Jr.

     Tis’ the season XIKAR Nation! Send us a picture of you getting into the holiday spirit to Dress up as Santa, cook up a storm, stand out in the snow (or under a mistletoe), give XIKAR as presents, etc. It doesn’t matter what holiday you are celebrating, the possibilities are endless so don’t be afraid to get creative!  Always remember, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate XIKAR into your entry (hint, hint). Our favorite entry will receive the perfect present of a 5ct Travel Case and red Executive II lighter. All entries must be submitted by December 19th 11:59 p.m. CST. The winner will be announced December 20th in our next newsletter and on Facebook/Twitter.
Copyright © 2012 reserved.
Our mailing address is:
PO Box 025757, Kansas City, MO 64102

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