Thomasville, Georgia- July 5, 2012
Where's Waldo? He's in Thomasville, of course, and the hunt is on!
"Our Waldo? I cant keep up with where he is," said Katie Chastain, owner of The Bookshelf.
Waldo is turning 25 this year, and to celebrate, he's visiting 20 independent downtown businesses to help boost the local economy.
Here's how it works; Waldo will be hiding somewhere inside the store or restaurant. When you find him, you'll receive a special card. Once you have 16 or more cards, you'll earn a Waldo button and your name will be entered into a larger drawing.
Shopper Patricia Deshazior-Hill said, "I like games and I like adventure so this is neat. It's right up my alley, so I will definitely be looking for him. This is awesome. "
For every dollar you spend at a local establishment, 68% of that will stay in Thomasville. That's compared to only 43% if you shop at a national chain and 0% if you shop online.
"A lot less goes into your school systems, your roads, all that. We can hire more people. It's just a way people can really give back to their local economy," Chastain said.
Tammy Wilson, owner of Earthlover says so far, the hunt has been great for business.
"People who were just looking for activities for their children and normally might not have come into our shops, but since they're looking for Waldo, it gave them a good reason, so it's definitely introduced us to some new shoppers."