Shop Logan County
Win gifts from local businesses and a chance to win a $500 cash prize

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[November 09, 2016]  LINCOLN - For the past several years, the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce has hosted Small Business Saturday, a shopping event in downtown Lincoln on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. This year, however, the Chamber has decided that it is in the best interest of all Logan County businesses and shoppers to expand the shop local initiative with a 30-day “Shop Logan County” campaign.

Bearing in mind the role of the Chamber as a county-wide representative of the business community, Chamber Director Cathy Wilhite stated recently that the Chamber believed it was important to represent and work for all the businesses in Logan County. She noted that this expanded campaign would encourage shoppers to not only visit downtown Lincoln, but also the businesses throughout the city and in our other communities such as Atlanta, Mount Pulaski and Elkhart.

Wilhite added, though this is a first time effort, she is excited about the number of businesses that have been anxious to participate. The Chamber is working to include businesses throughout the county, and though it has been somewhat of a struggle, she feels that in time, those outlying communities will come to see that the Chamber is here to work for everyone, regardless of where they are in Logan County.

For local shoppers, this campaign has some big rewards. The campaign is divided into two parts, the first being "Find Ralph the Reindeer." When Ralph is found in a particular business, that business will reward the finder with an immediate gift from the business.

The second part of the campaign will offer diligent shoppers an opportunity to win a $500 cash prize, with the drawing being held on December 15th.

Find Ralph the Reindeer

Ralph, aka famous movie moose Sven, will be hiding inside a variety of businesses between November 12th and December 12th. Ralph will go to a participating business and ‘hide.’ He will stay hidden until some lucky shopper finds him. When he is found, the shopper should take Ralph to the clerk, and will immediately receive a gift from that business.

Chamber event coordinator, Kari Adams, said it would be at the business’ discretion regarding what the gift may be. It could be a gift card for a future shopping trip, or it could be an item from the retailer, either way, it is sure to be worth the effort of looking for Ralph.

Ralph will stay in the business until he is found. Once found, he will move on to another participating business. Adams said depending on how quickly Ralph is found, he could be moved to a new location every day.

Now then, to help shoppers figure out where Ralph may be hiding, the Chamber will provide clues about his location. Those clues may be found on Lincoln Daily News by clicking on the “Shop Logan County” button in the right-hand sidebar on the Top Stories page. The clue will also be posted on the Chamber Facebook page.

“Shop Logan County” for a chance to win $500

The second part of the Shop Logan County campaign will end with one lucky shopper receiving a cash prize of $500.

Booklets will be available at the participating businesses or the Chamber office, currently located at 1555 Fifth Street in Lincoln. Shoppers will need to visit each business, and have that business’ page marked with a color-coded sticker. The booklet, once filled with stickers, should be returned to the Chamber office where it will become eligible for the $500 drawing.

Booklets must be returned to the Chamber office no later than December 12th.

It should be noted, that during this time, the Chamber offices will be moving. The move is currently scheduled to take place on December 1st, and the new Chamber location will be 110 North Kickapoo Street in Lincoln.

On December 15th, at approximately noon, Santa Clause is scheduled to stop in at the Chamber office, and in the presence of local media will draw out the winning booklet. The winner will be announced and may then pick up the $500 prize. Adams said that the Chamber would set a time limit on picking up the prize of 72 hours. So, if the prize is not claimed by December 18th, a new name will be drawn, and a new winner announced.

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Adams said that the $500 prize would NOT be issued in Chamber Bucks, it will be real money that the winner can use in whatever way they wish. She said there was a two-fold purpose for this. The Chamber is inviting all Logan County businesses to participate in this promotion, regardless of whether or not the business is a member of the Chamber organization. Businesses that are not members do not have the ability to accept Chamber Bucks, and the Chamber does not want to exclude those businesses from reaping the benefits of a $500 shopping experience.

Additionally, Adams noted that at this time of year, there are a lot of expenses for families as they prepare for Christmas. The money won through this campaign may be needed for other things, such as paying the utilities, or paying an insurance bill.

Adams said this was something the Chamber gave much thought to before making the decision not to use Chamber Bucks. In November, Adams and Wilhite presented the campaign to the Chamber Ambassadors, who work to help promote good relationships inside the chamber membership, as well as recruiting new members. The Ambassadors agreed that at Christmas time especially, families can use some extra cash, without being told where or how they must spend it.

Altogether, there are 27 Logan County businesses participating in the Shop Logan County campaign. Adams said she was surprised by some of the businesses that had signed up. She noted that it was not going to be all retailer. There are insurance agents participating, and even the local concrete company.

Here is the complete listing of participating businesses for the booklet (The list of businesses participating in Find Ralph won’t be posted – you’ll need to check for clues in Lincoln Daily News starting Saturday, November 12th):

  1. Best Friends Animal Hospital
  2. CCA online
  3. Contractors Ready-Mix
  4. Furniture Gallery
  5. Prairie Years
  6. El Mazatlan
  7. Nuthatch Hill BBQ Co.
  8. Hampton Inn
  9. Graue Inc.
  10. Lincoln Daily News
  11. Moriearty Insurance/Harris-Hodnet Insurance
  12. ME Realty
  13. Factory Connection
  14. Sir Renna Tea
  15. Michelle Bauer - Country Financial
  16. Culver’s
  17. ReNew Consignment & Thrift
  18. Joe Ryan – Country Financial
  19. Lincoln Printers
  20. Blades
  21. MKS Jewelers
  22. REPS Gym
  23. Flossie & Delzena’s
  24. Lincoln Park District
  25. Lincoln Art Institute
  26. Knights of Columbus Ladies Auxiliary (Santa’s Shop 1 Stop event)
  27. Copper Penny

In addition to all this, Adams noted that some of the businesses are adding a special discount coupon or secondary winning opportunity inside the booklet, which will give shoppers yet another opportunity to enjoy doing business with Logan County retailers and businesses with potential savings attached.

Booklets will be available starting this Saturday, November 12th, and must be turned in no later than Monday, December 12th.

[Nila Smith]

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