Scavenger hunt Saturday supports shopping local

Thank you for being one of our most loyal readers. Please consider supporting community journalism by subscribing.

Wilson businesses are looking to do more than just bolster their bottom line on Small Business Saturday. Participating owners are hoping the fun of a citywide scavenger hunt will lead to loyal customers in the long run.

“We’ve got a variety of retail, a couple of restaurants in there, boutiques and that kind of thing participating in the scavenger hunt,” said Melissa Evans, director of the Wilson Community College Small Business Center. “The goal is to drive business inside and entice people to become customers.”

Participants vary from recently opened places like 217 Brew Works to community favorites like Big Harold’s Diner and Art at 123 Studio.

“Downtown is the heart of our community,” Wilson Mayor Bruce Rose said during a Downtown Commerce Group meeting Monday where he presented a city proclamation about Small Business Saturday.

According to the proclamation, money spent in local businesses has more than three times the impact on the local economy than money spent in chain businesses.

“Local business owners and operators are commited to our community, contribute to the local economy, offer quality jobs for city residents, engage in civic concerns and are essential to our success as a community,” the proclamation states. “...We encourage all our residents to consider buying locally, not just at this time of year, but year round, helping to make Wilson a healthier, more successful city.”

While businesses have come together for scavenger hunts in the past, officials said the Small Business Saturday event will be the first citywide hunt in recent history. Organizers said they hope questions such as “What item is 70 percent off in Fitness, Video, Tanning & Gifts?” along with in-house activities at participating establishments — such as a robot built by Brick Scholars during the Saturday open house at Education Exchange — will make for a memorable Small Business Saturday.

“We wanted to do this scavenger hunt to promote small business in our community,” Evans said. “We hope it drives traffic to small merchants because they are the lifeblood of our community.”

Completed scavenger hunt forms can be dropped off by noon Monday in the book return at the Wilson County Public Library. Organizers were enter the winning forms into a drawing and three will be selected to receive $100 gift cards to spend at an area business.

For more information and a copy of the scavenger hunt form, go to tinyurl.com/hfj7qmh.

bhandgraaf@wilsontimes.com | 265-7821