Gift card program raises $300K for downtown Tucson businesses, makes final push

Gift card program raises $300K for downtown Tucson businesses, makes final push

From the June's Tucson-area coronavirus coverage: Bars, gyms face shutdowns; Tucsonans worried telemedicine might disappear series
Fox Tucson Theatre

Losses have piled up at the Fox Tucson Theatre since it was forced to close. A gift card incentive program has raised $300,000 for businesses downtown.

After raising more than $300,000 in just two months for downtown Tucson businesses, a gift card incentive program will make one final push to raise an additional $28,000.

The effort, launched by Downtown Tucson Partnership (DTP) on April 3, allows community members to purchase $25 gift cards to participating businesses and receive a free $10 bonus.

All of the proceeds go directly to more than 60 businesses, which include restaurants, museums, breweries, boutiques, grocers, spas and gyms.

Several businesses have seen revenue exceeding $10,000, said Kathleen Eriksen, president and CEO of the Downtown Tucson Partnership.

There have been eight online gift card sales thus far and the ninth is planned for Friday, June 12, at 9 a.m.

The final round will have 800 gift cards available, sponsored by the Downtown Development Corporation, Tucson Industrial Development Authority, Larry Hecker and Scott Parks.

Sponsors of previous rounds include Bourn Cos., Downtown Development Corp., Downtown Tucson Apartments, Downtown Tucson Partnership, Holualoa Companies, HSL Properties, Larry Hecker, Presidio Tucson, Rio Nuevo, Scott Parks and the Tucson Industrial Development Authority.

“The sponsor and community support we have seen has literally kept downtown businesses alive,” Eriksen said

David Furmanski, owner of Empire Pizza & Pub on Congress Street, called the program “one of the best examples of a successful public-private partnership I have ever seen.”

“I’m proud to be a business owner downtown and grateful to DTP and all the patron organizations that supported each round, and most importantly all the amazing people in Tucson that bought each round of gift certificates so quick in their desire to support local businesses,” Furmanski said.

Visit Downtowntucson.org for more information and a link to purchase the gift cards online.

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