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Congratulations to our Parade of Store winners

Dec. 1-3 marked the sixth annual Parade of Stores Event and the third year for the Super Prize Package drawing.

Three lucky people won a combination of prizes, including trips and a Spa Day.

Prizes were awarded to Dalia Espinosa, who won the trip to Aspen; Doug Cook, who won the trip to Santa Fe; and Jim Hudson won the Pagosa Spa Day.

In addition to these three super prize packages, there were also 40 winners picked in the frequent shopper part of the weekend. Each participating store offered up a small gift to thank those who came out and visited the Pagosa establishments.

This year appeared to involve larger purchases such as furniture, spas, stoves, tools, electronics, clothing and other items. The tax-free offer in many cases was an incentive to purchase items on this particular weekend. While we did not see as many people participate in the frequent shopper program, there was an increase in the dollars spent over the weekend.

This is also the first year that the Parade of Stores was held over a three-day period instead of two days. While not everyone participated in the Super Prize package drawing, we were still able to determine that over $66,000 of merchandise was purchased in those three days. This is an increase of 27 percent from 2010.

The point of the Parade of Stores is to bring awareness to shopping locally and purchasing as much as you can in our community. The dollars spent in Pagosa circulate within our community, supporting our businesses and the people who live here and own the businesses.

Another way you can support local business is to purchase Pagosa Perks. Perks can only be used in our community. Perks should be accepted by all businesses, even if they are not Chamber members. They spend like a money order, are guaranteed and are deposited into a business bank account just like a money order or cash. If you turn down Pagosa Perks dollars, you are turning away business. Pagosa Perks allow the receiver of the certificates to spend the money in the way they want. Perks can be used for groceries, gas, even utility payments. They can also be used at restaurants, lodging facilities, retail stores and for many other services. In this way, the owner chooses how to use the Perks and can either pay a necessity or treat themselves or their family to something special. The point is that they get to decide how to spend the certificate and the money stays in Pagosa Springs. Perks can only be obtained at the Chamber of Commerce.

Many thanks to all those who shopped our stores during the Parade of Stores weekend and many thanks to all the businesses that participated again this year.

Without support on all levels, this would not continue to be a successful event.

Gift of electricity

Another way to give this year is to give the gift of electricity.

La Plata Electric Association is providing the opportunity to issue a credit to someone’s LPEA account through a gift program.

Gifts can be made by mailing in a check with the name of an LPEA member/non-profit agency and the account address, stopping in at the Pagosa Springs office, or by calling (970) 247-5786. Gifts can be made anonymously.

This is just another way that people are helping others in this time of need. Even our basic necessities such as electricity can be thought of as a very thoughtful gift to someone.

For more information, visit the LPEA website at www.lpea.coop.

Upcoming holiday events

“The SantaLand Diaries” begins at the Pagosa Center for the Arts on Thursday, Dec. 15, with the champagne opening. The festivities begin at 6 p.m. with champagne and light hors d’oeuvres. The tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. The play continues Dec. 16 through the holiday season, until Dec. 30. Tickets for these performances run $15 in advance and $20 at the door. This adult comedy is based on one man’s experience in working as an elf in Macy’s SantaLand. Don’t miss this hysterical performance. Tickets and more information can be found at www.pagosacenter.org.

SHY Rabbit hosts a free open house and group show on Saturday, Dec. 17, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The show continues until Jan. 22, and will feature the work of many of SHY RABBIT’s artists. There will be ceramics, paintings, mixed media, limited edition prints and much more on display. If you have never been to SHY RABBIT, or it has been a while, or of you would like to show visiting family and friends a very unique art center in Pagosa, now is your chance. SHY Rabbit’s 4,000 square-foot gallery and studio is located at 333 Bastille Drive.

Another fantastic evening of music fills the air at the Pagosa Center for the Arts on Monday, Dec. 19, and Tuesday, Dec. 20, with “A Classic Christmas.” Artists such as John Graves, June Marquez, Ross Barrable, Kathy Isberg, Paul Roberts, Larry Elginer, Tim Moore and more will entertain you with holiday music. This performance is produced by the Elation Center with collaboration from the Pagosa Center for the Arts. There is a pre-concert social beginning at 6 p.m. with the performance starting at 7. Tickets are $15 for adults and $8 for youth 18 and younger and may be purchased by calling the Pagosa Center for the Arts at 731-7469 (SHOW).

Parents: If you are looking to get in a few hours of shopping away from children who are constantly trying to see what you bought them, think about the Holiday Hands-On Art Camp at the elementary school, Dec. 19-22. The camp is for students in kindergarten to sixth grade and it will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost for the class is $35 per day and includes instruction and materials. Children should bring lunch, a snack, water, winter gear and be dressed in comfortable clothing. The class is limited to 20 students per day and daily dropoffs are offered depending on space. For more information, you can visit their website www.hands-on-artscamp.com or call Lisa in the evenings at 731-3546 or Tessie at 731-9244.

Voting

This is a reminder to cast your votes for the 2012 Chamber of Commerce Board of Director nominees. There are six excellent candidates running for three available slots. Each business is allowed one vote. You can vote at the Chamber of Commerce during business hours Monday through Friday and you can vote for up to three candidates.

This year’s slate includes: Sara Anderson with Homespun Comforts, Stacy Boone with Step Outdoors, Kimberley Siler-Bradshaw with Southwest Elegance, Jeannie Sinkey with Mountain Landing Guest Quarters, Chris Smith with Visiting Angels, and Nick Tallent with Edward Jones. Reserve your calendars for the Chamber annual meeting on Saturday, Jan. 21, at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts. It will be a festive evening of food, awards, dancing and other festivities.

This is also a reminder to submit your nomination form for the Volunteer and Citizen of the Year awards. We like to recognize those individuals and groups that give so much to our community. Take this time to look at those you work or play with in the community and let us know about their fantastic contributions. Forms can be obtained online at the Chamber website or at the chamber offices.

Membership

Our renewing members this week include Next Door Decor; the JoAnn Laird Group, focusing on residential or commercial real estate; Andrew Baker with Pagosa Home Inspection; and Lyn DeLange with Creative Spirit Enterprises Advertising Specialties. In the non-profit sector we have the wonderful Wolf Creek Trailblazers Snowmobile Club, the active Pagosa Springs Youth Center and non-denominational Calvary Pagosa Church renewing. Our Chamber friends renewing this week are longtime member and former Chamber board director Andy Donlon, former volunteer and citizen of the year Joanne Irons, and wonderful Chamber cheerleaders Mary and Fred Webb.

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