By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: Special Interest | Issue: November 2007
Members of the 2007 Santa Cash Committee: Gina Wilson, Cinda Vaughn, Julie Adams, chairperson, Barry Cramer, Valerie Gunter, and Suburban Chevrolet’s Keith Haney
“Some people have the Santa Cash drawing down to an art,” says Julie Adams, chairperson of the annual Shop Claremore campaign, which kicks off November 16. “Some show up at the drawing with Excel spreadsheets of their ticket numbers. They get really serious about Santa Cash.”
The annual event, which focuses on “keeping the dollars in Claremore,” attracts a crowd at Lantow Field each year. The stadium, which is located behind Claremore High School, is filled to the brim on the morning of the drawing. Santa Cash will end this year at noon on December 21, culminating with the cash giveaway on December 22 at 10 a.m.
The top prize again this year is $5,000, donated by participating merchants, and a second prize of $2,500 has been given by Suburban Chevrolet, one of the Santa Cash sponsors. Other event sponsors include RCB Bank, Claremore Daily Progress, 1st Bank, IBC Bank, Wal-Mart, Grand Bank, the Claremore Chamber of Commerce, as well as Bank of Commerce.
The Santa Cash campaign has also been extended this year by one week. “Our merchants wanted to add this time to take care of last minute shoppers,” says Adams.
For each $10 that a shopper spends at participating Santa Cash merchants, he or she will receive a ticket and will be automatically entered in the grand prize drawing. To win one of the prizes, participants must be present at the drawing on December 22 with their tickets.
In addition to an extra week of shopping, an extra cash prize will be awarded this year. “Many shoppers don’t want to be present for the live drawing,” says Adams. “Merchants suggested that we add another prize of $1,000 that can be claimed by checking the Claremore Progress or the Claremore Chamber of Commerce website. The winning number will be publicized, and the owner of that ticket will have until midnight on January 2 to call and claim the prize.
“Since moving the drawing to Lantow Field three years ago, traffic problems are no longer an issue,” Adams says. “With assistance from the Claremore Police Department, we are able to move traffic quickly and, more importantly, safely. Traffic from our 2006 drawing was cleared in less than 30 minutes, which is faster than the traffic from one of our trains.”
As a timed event, the annual drawing uses a buzzer to add to the excitement. After the first ticket number is drawn, people have two minutes to claim their prize. If no winner comes forth, only one minute is allowed for each additional ticket drawn. “Last year, we drew three numbers before we had a winner for the $5,000,” Adams adds. “People who could have been winners weren’t there.”
Shoppers will not want to miss out on the December 22 event. “People usually start lining up at around 9 a.m. for the drawing,” Adams says. “It’s a lot of fun.” Santa Claus will also be making a surprise visit to liven up the atmosphere during the Santa Cash giveaway. Shop Claremore this holiday season for the chance to win the grand prize. For more information, contact the Claremore Chamber of Commerce at (918) 341-2818.
Santa Cash Sponsors:
1st Bank Oklahoma
Bank of Commerce
Claremore Daily Progress
Claremore Chamber of Commerce
A Place of Grace
Carl's Coney Island
Claremore Cinema 8
Dr. Tina Foutz
Enterprise Sod Store
Health Center Pharmacy
Heat Wave Tanning
Kwik Kar and Lube
Pixley Lumber Company
WestLake Ace Hardware
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.