Chamber’s administrative assistant Randi Amendt (L) and chamber manager Jordanna Evans say the chamber’s gift certificates are a great Christmas gift for a co-worker

Chamber’s administrative assistant Randi Amendt (L) and chamber manager Jordanna Evans say the chamber’s gift certificates are a great Christmas gift for a co-worker

Keeping local dollars in Burns Lake

Chamber hopes gift certificate sales will increase this Christmas

Since the Burns Lake and District Chamber of Commerce’s gift certificate program was launched in November 2015, over $72,000 worth of gift certificates have been purchased in Burns Lake.

The majority of these purchases, however, took place in 2015. By the end of 2015, $48,000 worth of gift certificates had been sold.

Although less gift certificates have been sold so far in 2016 – $24,000 – compared to the previous year, the chamber hopes this Christmas season will give the program a boost.

“The gift certificate program was launched this time last year, so the big chunk of sales you are seeing [$48,000] was around the 2015 Christmas season,” said chamber manager Jordanna Evans. “This year we expect the same to happen as Christmas gets closer.”

“In the last month we have already seen a great increase in sales,” she continued. “I’m very excited to see how many more certificates we sell during the holiday season.”

“Overall, the program has done really well, keeping local dollars in our community,” she added.

Evans says the program will be reviewed next year and changes, if any, will be implemented in 2018.

The chamber decided to launch the gift certificate program after a survey conducted with its members in 2015. The survey showed that chamber members considered “enticing local shoppers” a number one priority.

The program allows companies, organizations and individual consumers to purchase gift certificates from the chamber and redeem them at approximately 30 participating local retailers and service businesses.

Participating businesses pay an annual administration fee of $50 plus GST, which covers the cost of printing and administration. The redemption fee is one per cent.

Gift certificates can be purchased in denominations of $10, $25, $50 or $100. The chamber will also entertain special orders of different amounts.

For more information or to check the list of participating businesses, visit the chamber’s website at burnslakechamber.com