The Cash Mob’s second event was a bit different, said organizer Steve Funk.
“It’s different than what we’ve done in the past,” Funk said. “Today, we are going to meet, socialize and then go shopping.”
The monthly events are meant to boost local businesses in northern Nevada by gathering a group of local customers together for a few hours who have pledged to spend between $10 to $20 during the challenge.
“Getting 40 people to come out identifying themselves can mean 200 percent more business than (the shops) would have seen that day,” Fund said.
Similar events have been organized at Sundance Bookstore and Recycled Records, where the Cash Mob held its first outing.
Arlington Gardens Mall shop owners had different reactions to Tuesday’s event.
Hidden from the main street, the mall features boutique stores, including Healing Wisdom Spa, which sells clothing, upscale beauty products, bodywork and a rare form of massage-style technique called Breema.
For a reasonable price, depending on the amount of time spent in the room, Dori Haugland, a certified Breema specialist, will deliver a bodywork unlike nothing you’ve experienced before. BREEMA is a type of therapy that involves soothing forms of touch and body movement that are designed to increase the energy flow of the body with gentle body stretches, massages and movements. Finding a specialist anywhere who specializes in this type of bodywork, that can ease pain and increase energy, is rare.
“There are great local businesses around our marketplace,” Funk said.
“They have to go by word of mouth. Spending local dollars without (the business) advertising is the whole point behind the Cash Mob.
Merchants at the mall also contribute to the event by holding raffles or giving prize packages.
The shops want customers to try their products and give customers a reason to come back, he said.
“There are neat shops here.”
The mall also includes Country Gardens Restaurant with a French courtyard setting and outdoor tables. Locals also can find specialty shops like Bella Italia wines, foods and gifts, Quality Event Designs, Alterations by Sharlee, My Scandinavia Gifts and other small corner boutiques, including one exclusively for those who want something to do with fairies.
Pat Dahin of Reno works for her friend in My Scandinavia Gifts.
Everything from handmade, woolen baby socks to canned reindeer meat and handmade Baltic jewelry can be found inside the doors.
“I don’t know if people know how to hard it is for independent people,” Dahlin said. “It’s pretty hard to stay in business. This mall, I think, is invisible.”
Yet, the store is filled with unusual items that are rarely found anywhere in the Reno-Sparks area. All items, including the handmade sweaters, blankets, earrings, and candle chandelier are imported directly from Scandinavia. The candy, jams and flags are also finds for those who may miss the old country.
Locals can find “Reno Sparks Cash Mob” events on Facebook and “like” it. Cash Mob organizers encourage them to invite their friends to do the same and share it.
Shoppers can also post suggestions to the group for a favorite locally-owned businesses, which will go into a pool for the next scheduled mobs.
For more information, contact Steve Funk at 240-4871 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find out more on the Reno-Sparks Ca$h Mob Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/359990710719511/