By Sierra Lauder
Director of Events and Downtown Development
We officially drew the Grand Prize winner for the Downtown Sweepstakes, and I wrestled the Chamber Chatter away from Justin this week so I could share some of the awesome news about the program. For those of you unfamiliar with the Downtown Sweepstakes, 2018 was our second year hosting it. The 12-week program starts the first week of October and runs through the last day of December, with weekly drawings hosted by various downtown businesses and a GRAND PRIZE of ONE THOUSAND Downtown Dollars sponsored by US Bank.
All it takes to enter is a quick shop downtown; our Tillamook Downtown District spreads from Front to Fifth Streets and Laurel to Stillwell Avenue, and a receipt from any business in that district to the Chamber office was good for an entry (one per day) throughout the Sweepstakes period. We asked entrants to share where they shopped and how much they spent just for fun, and when we drew weekly prizes not only did the shopper win (whether it was a gift certificate to Sarasota’s or tickets to Oregon Coast Dance Center’s Nutcracker event), a matching prize was gifted to the business they shopped at!
We added the line asking how much was spent on each entry so we could get a better sense of how much money people are spending per transaction. Obviously, this is not scientific and in no way reflects even a tenth of the shopping that was done downtown during the Sweepstakes period, but what we can report is that of the approximately 900 entries we received, more than $40,000 was spent in association with those entries! Again, there is no science to this and it is only a small piece of the picture, but it’s fun to see those numbers and since we know US Bank has committed to a 2019 Downtown Sweepstakes it will be exciting to see how they compare with future years.
While the Sweepstakes season is behind us for now, I have to tell you that downtown is not taking the winter off! In talking with businesses, they are leaping into 2019 with a full calendar: SIP + SHOP events scheduled all year on the second Friday of each month, ArtWalks scheduled on the fourth Saturday of each month, great sales, special menus and hot new movies; it’s a great time to take advantage of the front row parking and brand new sidewalks and visit with your retail neighbors. Special events continue to pop up including the Tillamook Rotary Club’s Winter in the Alps Party at the Pelican Brewery on January 26th, and the Tillamook Estuaries Partnership has moved their Bounty on the Bay event to Pacific Restaurant and tickets are on sale now.
If you have any questions about the Downtown Sweepstakes or other downtown events, feel free to contact me at the Chamber office any time; stop by headquarter at 208 Main Ave, call (503) 842-7525 or send me an email: Sierra@tillamookchamber.org. I love to talk Tillamook.