For the 4th consecutive year, businesses throughout La Conner will be participating in the Season of Giving campaign by donating 10% of their holiday sales on three consecutive Sundays to local non-profit organizations, including Hospice of Northwest Washington, Humane Society of Skagit County, and Boys and Girls Club of Skagit County.
According to Catherine Wyman, owner of Wyman Park in La Conner, the Season of Giving idea was born during the early days of the recession when non-profit organizations were significantly impacted by donors who had less expendable income to share. “The need was just as great – in some cases even greater,” says Wyman. “It occurred to me that while individual donors might not be as able to help as much as they had in previous years, collective efforts could potentially have a very positive impact.”
Wyman approached the business community in La Conner with an idea: For 3 consecutive Sundays in late November and early December – when holiday shopping was at its peak – why not ask merchants, restaurants and hotels & inns to donate a portion of their sales on those days to local non-profit organizations. The first year, in 2008, fourteen businesses participated. This year, thirty-four businesses are participating. “It’s not at all complicated, and yet offers so much in the way of support. We simply ask the businesses to track their revenue on the 3 chosen days, and then send their 10% donations to each of the 3 organizations. The businesses know that they’re helping make a difference for organizations hard-hit by tough economic times, and shoppers love the idea that they can give back to these organizations in a fun and special way.”
According to Marci Plank, La Conner Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, “Every year we have visitors and locals who specifically do their holiday shopping in La Conner because our Season of Giving campaign is near and dear to their hearts. Rather than spend money at the big-box stores and malls, they love supporting our efforts by finding one-of-a-kind items in our local shops, eating in our restaurants, and in some cases spending the night for a special holiday getaway weekend.”
Each participating business will have a poster in their window and can hand out cards along with receipts with a message saying, “Thanks for helping us help others during our Season of Giving campaign.”
This year’s Season of Giving dates and supported organizations are November 25th – Hospice of Northwest Washington, December 2nd – Humane Society of Skagit County, and December 9th – Boys and Girls Club of Skagit County.