More than 120 people showed up and the crowd was decidedly younger than most of Bush's recent events. Waukee is a fast-growing outer suburb of Des Moines mostly populated by younger families and the firehouse is near several local schools.
In a sure sign that Bush enjoyed himself, he lingered afterward for about a half hour, answering follow-up questions and posing for pictures.
He gave hugs and kisses to older women, including one who asked about his mother, former first lady Barbara Bush, and urged him to eat more M&M's and gain back some of the weight he's lost in recent months.
Then reporters shared a "Did he really just do that?!" moment when Bush suddenly gave a man a chest bump. Yes, a chest bump.
Amid loud music playing overhead, he could be heard by a Washington Post reporter telling Bush that he'd been supporting Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and changed his mind after Tuesday night's debate. He added that he'd already spoken with one of Bush's Iowa-based aides about his change of heart.
Elated, Bush asked the man again if his change of heart was for real. When he said yes, they bumped chests.
The Bush convert is Shane Blanchard, a Waukee city councilman, who told CNN that he decided to switch candidates after realizing that his views on education and immigration align more with the former Florida governor. He had been drawn to Cruz by his views on social issues.
A CNN producer caught the exchange on camera:
“I do that for every convert,” Bush told reporters as he left the firehouse. "Anytime you guys want to try a chest bump, I’m all in."
On Thursday, Bush hopes to bump more chests -- or give out hugs and kisses -- when he holds a town hall meeting in Grand Rapids, Mich. before heading back to New Hampshire, his must-win state, later in the day.
This story has been updated.