Decorations and celebrations aren’t the only plans The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce has for the holiday season.
The local business organization is kicking off its Shop Local and Win campaign on Starlight Parade Friday, Nov. 29, to encourage people to shop in The Dalles for the holidays rather than making their purchases out of town.
“If you shop in The Dalles between the 29th of November and the 30th of December, for every $100 you spend in The Dalles, you can come in to the chamber with your receipt and get one contest entry,” said Lisa Farquharson, chamber CEO.
Weekly drawings will take place every Monday in December followed by a grand prize drawing on Dec. 31. Each receipt will be marked, so it won’t be eligible for a second entry.
Prizes are still being finalized, but the grand prize will include on overnight stay in the special Barn Room and dinner at Cousins’ Country Inn and a two-hour limousine ride. Local businesses are contributing items for the weekly prizes, too, Farquharson noted, and some service businesses are donating cash to help purchase prizes, including Northwest Natural Gas, Rivermark Credit Union and Columbia Gorge Insurance.
“We just want to kick off the Christmas spirit,” she said.
The contest isn’t limited to retail purchases.
“If you go to the dentist or to a local insurance agent to pay your bill, bring your receipt and we’ll count that,” she said. “We want to reward people to keep all kinds of business local.”
Shopping locally is vital to keeping businesses in the community.
“If we don’t keep our money local, the businesses aren’t going to be here,” Farquharson said. “People complain at the empty buildings, but have they shopped at the full ones?”