RANGELY I In Rangely throughout the month of November, there is a chance for local shoppers to get some money back through the annual Shop ‘N Dine program.
As had been the case in the past, the program allows for local residents and visitors to collect receipts for goods bought locally during the month—with the exceptions of tobacco, pharmaceuticals, gas and utilities—and then exchange those receipts for vouchers to be spent at local licensed businesses.
Shoppers can earn $5 worth of vouchers for every $50 spent, with a maximum total of $30 worth of vouchers per individual. Receipts must be exchanged for vouchers by Nov. 30, and vouchers must be redeemed in full by Dec. 5, giving shoppers an additional week to cash in than in previous years.
The program is designed to encourage local spending during the holiday season by returning some of the sales tax collected back to the taxpayers. Once the program is over, the town of Rangely will refund the local businesses for the vouchers they collected.
Rangely Area Chamber of Commerce Director Kristin Steele believes the program has long-term benefits for the community.
“This gives an incentive for people to choose to spend those dollars locally instead of out of town,” Steele said. “Perhaps for the month of November a family chooses to buy all its laundry soap and cleaning supplies at True Value, which they don’t normally may or may not do, but this month they did because they would be rewarded
“The family can then notice that many of the products they were going out of town to buy are in fact available locally and at not much more than they were paying out of town, particularly when you include traveling, meal and gas costs. Next time when they buy those products, they will buy locally, plus, hopefully, more,” she said.
Shop ‘N’ Dine has seen impressive growth since its debut in 2009.
Rangely Town Manager Peter Brixius said that in the first year, the program allowed the town to return approximately $6,000 to $7,000 in vouchers. However, the recent years have seen the town’s vouchers totaling approximately $14,000.
“It took a while to catch on,” said Brixius, who also believes there are now some people who will wait until November to make major purchases in order to cash in with the vouchers.
If shoppers need a little inspiration for local gifts to earn those vouchers, with they can check out the Rangely Gift Guide prepared annually by Chamber of Commerce. The guide lists interesting items available around town.
The guide can be picked up at the Rangely chamber office and is also posted at various locations around town.