Business owners say the promotion brought in lots of customers
"It was crazy. It was like Christmas. It was one of the best days we've
had all year," is how Jacki Adams, owner of The Sycamore Tree,
described Tuesday's launch of the Terrific Tuesdays downtown shopping
Adams is is co-chair of the Terrific Tuesdays campaign, which is
designed to lure shoppers downtown with drawings for merchandise,
prizes and gift certificates of $10, $20, $25, $50 or $100 at 26
downtown businesses and a few in other areas of town every Tuesday
during the summertime.
"Usually we can get by with myself and two employees waiting on customers on weekdays, but we had so many people come in that I had to call my husband and daughter to come down and help out," Adams said.
A total of 26 businesses had signed up to participate as of Monday, and several others, including Don's Jewelry on Main Street and Paizano's Pizza on 10th Street, joined the promotion on Tuesday after people started coming into their stores asking about their Terrific Tuesday drawing or discounts.
People won prizes at most stores during the first Terrific Tuesday, but as of this morning Adams said they hadn't tabulated all the winnings.
"We had nine or 10 people play, and we had one winner. They won a certificate for a CD under $20," said Anna Ross, a clerk at Marilyn's Music on Main Street.
Betty's Books had a prize winner first thing in the morning who took home an advanced reader book. Other prizes included $25 gift certificates and coupons for rentals from a wide selection of books on CD, and several other prizes.
"The downtown started this project, but that doesn't mean businesses in other parts of town, or in Haines, Halfway or Richland can't get involved. Eventually we'd like to see Terrific Tuesdays expand countywide," said Debi Bainter, executive director of the Baker County Chamber of Commerce.
Bi-Mart also does a prize drawing on Tuesdays, and DandB Supply offers 10 percent discounts to senior citizens on Tuesdays, which is an idea Bainter said downtown businesses and others participating in the Terrific Tuesday drawings are considering adding to their promotion.
She said activity varied widely from store to store, and the general consensus was that the business community needs to do more to get the word out about Terrific Tuesdays because a lot of people in the community still don't know what it is or which stores are participating, where they are located or what all they sell.
Don McClure, owner of Don's Jewelry on Main Street, said he thinks Terrific Tuesdays is an excellent idea for promoting downtown businesses, but he hadn't gotten around to signing up until several people came to his store on Tuesday asking what was in his Terrific Tuesday drawing.
At that point he called Adams to sign up and pay a $30 fee, which covers a share of group advertising costs, posters, brochures and other promotional materials.
"I think it is tremendous that we are all working together on this. It's good to have a common theme and goal for downtown," McClure said. "I like the idea of the drawings because it gives people a reason to come downtown and walk inside different stores."
McClure said the cooperation he's seen with the summer Terrific Tuesday promotion gives him hope that downtown businesses can work together on joint marketing plans and other coordination, such as extending business hours on some evenings to better serve the needs and schedules of modern-day working couples and their families.
Next Tuesday he said he'll have his drawing set up with a variety of prizes including a $100 and $50 gift certificates for jewelry and maybe a watch.
"We actually had customers who I hadn't seen for awhile come in and ask about it," said Amber Boothby, a sales professional at Don's Jewelry. "I don't know if the newspaper ads brought them out, but they heard about the drawings and came down."
"Everybody's a winner here," said New 2 You owner JoAnn Siekman, who gave out candy bars to people who didn't win at her prize drawing.
She said it was fun handing out candy as consolation prizes.
"When I say everybody's a winner here and they get candy, it makes people laugh. They feel good when that happens," Siekman said.
Jim McElroy, owner of McElroy Printing and Blue Mountain Design Works, said Terrific Tuesday traffic was a little slow and the three or four people who came in for the drawing failed to draw the winning ticket for his $100 gift certificate.
Nevertheless, he said the first Terrific Tuesday was a good start.
"We think it's a good idea and want to support it and keep it going," McElroy said.
Bainter said businesses owners are invited to a meeting next Wednesday at 8 a.m. at the Baker City Cafe to review the promotion and possible changes, such as adding a 10 percent senior citizen discount on Tuesdays, and possibly expanding cooperative advertising or other avenues to get the word out about Terrific Tuesdays.