David Evans was in the shower when Dungog District Chamber of Commerce President Jennifer Lewis rang to tell him he had won $3000 Dungog Dollars in the chamber’s Buy Local promotion.
It was a very public affair as the event took place in front of a large crowd gathered in the vacant block alongside the bakery and was broadcast over Radio Dungog.
A blinkered Radio Dungog’s Simon Smith climbed inside the trailer load of entries and drew the winning submission, with guidance from Ms Lewis.
David arrived to collect his prize, dressed and almost dry. His first thoughts on how to disperse the Dungog dollars was to blow the lot on a ride-on lawn mower.
“I have got a few acres to look after, he said. “And my mower is not going. It has been getting fixed for quite some time.... so a new one would be good.”
Second prize of $750 went to Zoe Mair and third, $250, to Vince Willmen.
MS Lewis said the promotion had been a huge success, attracting more than 25,000 entries.
A NSW Trade Investment grant received some time ago had helped fund the promotion along with 22 participating businesses.
“We could not put on a promotion like this without the grant unless we managed to attract 50 businesses on board,” she said. “But I don’t know what grants are out there at the moment, if any.”
After the success of this year’s promotion, Ms Lewis was hopeful more businesses would be attracted to next year’s event. However, she believed the rules of entry could be modified to make it more beneficial to businesses and participants alike.
This could mean increasing the qualifying spend amount from $50 to $100.
But in the meantime the chamber is considering launching a shire-wide window competition leading up to Christmas as a way of generating business interest in the towns.
Ms Lewis thanked the Dungog Lions Club for manning a barbecue sausage sizzle at the draw and all businesses that participated.