BY: RACHEL WUMKES
The ups and downs of everything associated with this pandemic are exhausting. Emotions seems to be scattered all over like someone dropped the container of sprinkles on the floor. Over here, we’re sad. Sad for our Seniors. Sad for our teachers. Sad for everything we’ve all missed out on.
Then there’s the worry of small business owners. Their shoulders carry a weight I cannot even fathom. It’s a crippling fear faced day in and day out for so many in Clear Lake and all of North Iowa.
Well, here’s a little something to put the wind back in your sails, to focus on the good pile of sprinkles. For this ‘Feel Good Friday’ bit of news, I want to share how all of you lightened that heavy load for some local businesses.
First up, we found out Fareway Store’s Inc. partnered with local Chambers to donate $200,000 in gift cards throughout the state of Iowa. These cards were distributed to member businesses in our community. The local Fareway staff put together this heartfelt video to share with you all. I suggest you grab a tissue because it will hit you in all the feels.
As if that didn’t lift our spirits high enough, the team at the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce decided it was time for an extra pick-me-up. A boost to get us out of the dumps and back up to that feeling of hope and optimism. Thus, we decided to run another round of the “Buy In Clear Lake” gift card promotion.
And you guys, the sponsors came POURING in. Small businesses, large businesses. Even local residents stepped up to help. With every call, email or text, our hearts began to swell. Even as I write this, my eyes are a little misty. I can’t help it. I’m just so incredibly proud of this community!
All in all, the sponsors chipped in to cover the $10 difference on 1379 gift cards! ONE THOUSAND, THREE HUNDRED, SEVENTY-NINE!!!!!
Incredible. Amazing. Phenomenal.
Mostly, it’s just plain unreal.
The best part of the whole initiative was when the cards went live at 4PM on Thursday. In a mere 34 minutes, you guys snatched them up, supporting local businesses in our community, and pumping another $41,370 directly into our economy. Coupled with the first round we did back in March, that’s a total of $67,170!
I’m floored. Simply floored by the outpouring of support in this initiative. In the way you all have stepped up to buy these gift cards and support our local shops and restaurants. It might just be enough to keep your favorite place afloat until they are able to reopen their doors and fully function again.
Ups and downs are inevitable. They are going to ebb and flow daily. When you’re on a downslope, feeling sad and grieving all the things we’ve lost during this pandemic, come back to this blog and find yourself a bit of good. Find that pile of sprinkles representing goodness, kindness, and hope.
And scatter them around like confetti!
Have a wonderful weekend, Clear Lakers.
We’ll see ya – at a socially acceptable distance – at the Lake!
**A Special Shout out THANK YOU goes to the following sponsors. The success of this program is all because of their generous donations!**
|Terry & Anne Unsworth|
|David & Vickie Snyder|
|Clear Lake Bank & Trust|
|First Citizens Bank|
|Cabin Coffee Company|
|Clear Lake Evening Lions|
|Chad Harrison CPABetty Soukup|
|CLB&T Insurance and Financial Services|
|Farmers State Bank|
|21st Century Women|
|Don's Auto Body|
|Don & Sandy Christ|
|Dave & Jacque WardBicycle, Blues, & BBQ|
|First Gabrielson Agency|
|Potter & Brant, PLC|
|Dennis & Cerise SisselTim & Kelly Putnam|
|Landfill of North Iowa|
|Hugh Webb, Realtor|
|Tim & Kelli Augustine|
|Mike & Cathy Callanan|
|Mark & Deb Tesar|
|Author Rachel Smith|
|Bergland + Cram|
|Jerry & Tammy DenHartog|
|PM Park & Tiki Bar|
|Allyson Hendricks, Realtor|
|Les & Alisa Kinseth|
|Athletico Physical Therapy|
|Trinity & Stacy Doughan|
|American Solutions for Business|
|Edward Jones - Tony Conroy|
|Twin Oaks Campground|
|The Cone (aka Sweet Spot)|
|Scribbins Family Dentistry|
|Katlyn & Izabella Hill|
|A_L Services (Lothar Meyer)|
|Clear Lake Rotary|
|Steve & Sue Nicklaus|
|The Funky Zebras|
|Sherry Wharam, Pampered Chef|
|Chuck & Sherry Schafer|
|Roger & Lee Walston|