(Editor’s note: The author is the wife of Patch Editor James Warden.)
When I hear the word “free,” my ears instantly perk up. I mean, who doesn’t love it when goodies are handed to them, no strings (or dollars) attached?
When my husband told me about a “Girls on the Town” event in May and mentioned the prizes and giveaways, I figured I’d check it out. I stopped by with my mom and a family friend, not really knowing what to expect.
It was pretty clear to all of us from the get-go that we were in for a treat. When we checked in at the , we received goodie bags filled with coupons to at least a dozen nearby restaurants and shops. We also got a brochure that listed all of the “Girls on the Town” participating businesses. If you got signatures from at least 10, you could exchange the brochure for a raffle ticket that gave you a chance at some big prizes donated by local merchants.
We intended to collect just the required 10 signatures and then get our raffle ticket. But when we began visiting local retailers, we so enjoyed the camaraderie with fellow shoppers and sellers that we collected even more. In addition to stopping by stores, a large garage in the center of town housed tables where at least a couple dozen more merchants were selling or promoting their wares. You could learn about hosting a Tastefully Simple or Tupperware party, buy items like wine gadgets and jewelry or even start planning a vacation with a local travel agent.
Between all of the stores we visited and the merchant tables we stopped at, we took home a huge amount of free loot—cubic zirconium earrings from The Jewelry Liquidator, incredible coupons and gift cards (after spinning a wheel, I was given a $10 gift card and my mom’s was for $25!), buy-one-get-one meal coupons from , free bracelets and much more.
After we’d made our way around the town, we stopped at the for happy hour and bingo while we waited until the big prizes were raffled off.
The event brought the whole town out, and it reminded many of us why we’re glad to live in Hopkins. It provided an opportunity for mothers, daughters, sisters and friends to spend time together—and it introduced me and other residents to new stores and restaurants in Hopkins.
When it was time for the raffle, at least 200 people who had participated in the day’s activities gathered in hopes that their ticket number would be called. Although I was hoping to win one of the many prizes, I never thought I’d be quite that lucky. But apparently it’s true what they say—good things happen to those who least expect it. I won a $50 gift card to , and my mom won two tickets to a concert at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.
All in all, the day was thoroughly enjoyable. My mom and I raved about it for weeks—and the Nov. 5 event has been on our calendars ever since. This time, we’re bringing even more of our friends. As we told them, it’ll be way too good to miss.
If you go …
- When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday
- Where: Hopkins downtown businesses. Participating businesses will have pink bows on their doors.
- Goodie bag: The first 300 people to stop by the receive a bag filled with valuable coupons.
- Shopping and dining deals: Check out the PDF above for full details of offerings by nearly four dozen businesses.
- Fashion show: See new looks at 2:15 p.m. at the Albert Pike Masonic Temple (905 Mainstreet).
- Drawing: For every $50 spent at participating businesses, receive one entry into a drawing for prizes. The drawing takes place at 3 p.m. at the Albert Pike Masonic Temple.