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Local agencies promote Anchorage First

Campaign targets slow retail months

On Tuesday, organizers will launch Anchorage First, a campaign targeting Alaska's quietest retail months.  The campaign is meant to build consumer confidence and provide a boost to the local economy. National consumer confidence index figures released last week show a steep decline posting its lowest level since April 2009.

"Local consumers are watching the national headlines and taking it to heart," said Bill Popp, president/ CEO of Anchorage Economic Development Corporation. "Saving is prudent, but a little confidence will make a big difference in our local economy and workforce."

Campaign organizers are encouraging local residents to invest in the community by shopping locally, instead of online or out of state. If each Anchorage household with an income of $50,000 a month were to spend as little as $50 a month locally, for the next three months, campaign organizers believe the local economy would benefit from an injection of as much as $10 million.

"We're not asking people to spend irresponsibly or beyond their means," added Popp. "While we are all aware of what the national headlines read, Anchorage is in a better position than most cities and this proactive campaign has great benefits for the community."

While Anchorage does not have a sales tax and monthly sales receipts are not measured for the city, most local retailers agree "the months after the holidays and before summer are always slowest," said Christopher Schutte, executive director for Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. "That's what makes this campaign so important."

"By going out to dinner, a movie or even taking an extra ski trip, you are helping Anchorage pull out of the winter rut," added Popp.

Campaign organizers include AEDC, the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce, Anchorage Convention & Visitors Bureau and Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd. The four agencies have reached out to its members encouraging discount packages and special savings available through the Anchorage First program.

A number of local businesses representing a variety of enterprises have joined the campaign in its early stages, including the Glacier BrewHouse, Alaska Club, TitleWave Books, BOSCO's, the Anchorage Opera and WineStyles.

A listing of retailers participating in Anchorage First and their discounts may be found by visiting: www.GoAnchorageFirst.com or by following @AnchorageFirst on twitter.




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