Waukon Chamber of Commerce encourages supporting the local economy with new Waukon Dollars program

Examples of the Waukon Dollars ... Pictured above are the three different denominations available through the Waukon Dollars program being coordinated by the Waukon Chamber of Commerce. Each certificate has an aerial photo of downtown Waukon, and the certificates are available for purchase through the Waukon Chamber of Commerce. Submitted image.

The Waukon Chamber of Commerce and business owners in Waukon want to make the local shopping experience and gift giving a little bit easier, creating a new Waukon Dollars program.

Waukon Dollars are gift certificates available in $5, $10 and $20 increments (as shown in the accompanying photos) and are accepted at multiple merchants in Waukon, including restaurants and shopping locations. The purpose of Waukon Dollars is to continue to support and grow the local economy in Waukon. Each Waukon Dollar certificate features an aerial photo of the downtown Waukon area, along with its monetary denomination.

Waukon Dollars may be exchanged for goods and/or services (just like cash) at participating businesses in Waukon. Waukon Dollars are not redeemable for cash, and if lost or stolen, Waukon Dollars cannot be replaced. Waukon Dollars expire one year after their issue date.

The Waukon Dollars program is a simple gift certificate program that unifies and promotes Waukon businesses. Waukon Dollars are different than other gift cards or certificates because of their mission to support local by shopping, dining or seeking services in the area. Those purchasing and using Waukon Dollars are directly supporting local merchants who make the community unique and a vibrant place to be.

Downtown and small businesses financially reinvest twice as much back into the local economy as do chain or department stores. Compared to chain stores, locally-owned businesses recycle a much larger share of their revenue back into the local economy, enriching the whole community. Downtown contributes to a strong community by linking neighbors in a web of economic, cultural and social relationships. In an increasingly homogenized world, communities that preserve and support their downtown’s distinctive character have a long-term economic advantage.

Purchase Waukon Dollars in person at the Area Development & Visitor Center, located at 101 West Main Street in Waukon, or call 563-568-4110 or email waukonchamber@gmail.com to get Waukon Dollars prepared for pick-up. Office hours are 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. weekdays. The Waukon Chamber of Commerce can provide any purchaser of Waukon Dollars with an invoice and receipt, if necessary.

Waukon Dollars can be purchased by businesses, organizations, community members and surrounding community members. They are not solely for purchase by Waukon community members, but they do need to be spent within Waukon.

Give the gift of shopping, dining and services in Waukon with Waukon Dollars, just like buying a gift certificate that can be used in various businesses all throughout Waukon. Once new businesses arrive within Waukon, the Waukon Chamber of Commerce works to update the participating merchant list to keep it current for community members.

The recipient of Waukon Dollars will enjoy their choice of locations to spend the Dollars, all while supporting small businesses and the local community by keeping their money right here.

The Waukon Chamber of Commerce has compiled a list of merchants that will accept Waukon Dollars. That list is subject to change as new businesses are added to the program regularly and will be available from the Chamber office in Waukon and also on the Chamber’s website and social media pages.

The Chamber will also provide each participating business with a window sticker (round image accompanying this article) so the community has a better understanding of which merchants are accepting Waukon Dollars.

Businesses interested in participating in the program should contact waukonchamber@gmail.com or call 563-568-4110. The Waukon Chamber of Commerce will add each participating business to the complete list of the businesses that accept Waukon Dollars and deliver the storefront window cling to advertise the business’ participation in the program.

Participating businesses can accept Waukon Dollars as cash for purchases of goods and/or services, and should dispense change (just like a normal cash transaction) if the purchase amount is less than the Waukon Dollars amount presented at payment.

Businesses who receive Waukon Dollars can take them to any bank in Waukon for redemption in cash. Business owners who do not bank within Waukon can still accept Waukon Dollars and redeem them at any bank in Waukon.

Waukon Dollars expire one year after the date issued. They are void without an authorized Chamber of Commerce signature of seal. For additional information, contact the Waukon Chamber of Commerce at waukonchamber@gmail.com or call 563-568-4110.