What’s in Santa’s Bag?

MIFFLINBURG -- A new promotion in Mifflinburg has more people browsing small businesses, and gives shoppers the chance to win Christmas gifts.

Chestnut Street in Mifflinburg is lined with small businesses. Mifflinburg Mayor David Cooney wants to make sure shoppers spend their hard-earned money here. So he came up with an idea to get shoppers and businesses involved in a raffle.

"Within a few hours, I had 30 people pledging to donate, and within a day, I had 50," Mayor David Cooney said.

58 businesses donated items for a raffle Cooney calls "What's in Santa's Bag?" The display is in the window of the mayor's photography studio. Everyone is invited to guess how much all of the items are worth. Whoever guesses the closest wins.

"They win everything in the window," Cooney said.

"What's in Santa's Bag?" is not only about trying to win a prize, it's getting people to shop at small businesses.

"We donated a Cinnabon jar candle," Barbara Yost said.

Barbara Yost of "Barb's Bouquet and Gift Basket" is involved in the raffle. Her store is one of the places where shoppers can vote.

"It's a relatively low-cost something for us to do, but it might have some good benefits because it could bring people into the store," Yost said.

Shoppers are excited about the raffle.

"When you look at all the items that are there to try to figure out how much they cost, you have to spend some time looking in the window," Helen Klauger said.

"It's good because small businesses are where you find the best things," Carol Thomas said.

"Maybe discover a business you didn't really realize what they had. Maybe you'll meet a new friend or find a new hairdresser and find another new place to shop local," Cooney said.

The contest ends on December 17.

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