What kid wouldn’t want his picture featured on a large billboard above a well-traveled highway through Oneida for all his friends and family to see?

That is the thinking behind the Scott County Chamber of Commerce’s contest to encourage parents to shop locally.

At Thursday’s board of directors meeting, Chamber of Commerce executive director Stacey Kidd announced the new Shop Local campaign.

The idea is that parents who are shopping for back-to-school clothes or school supplies submit their receipts from local merchants to the Chamber of Commerce. A winner will be drawn from those receipts, and those children will be featured on an upcoming billboard at the Oak Grove intersection to promote shopping local.

“We want to promote our local merchants, and we want to feature our greatest resource, which is our children here in Scott County, and we thought this would be a good way to do both,” Kidd noted. “United Cumberland Bank had a lot of success and encouraged a lot of people to think about keeping their spending here in the community when they did their receipts contest last year. We wanted to take a page from their book and continue to promote shopping locally.”

Receipts can be from any local merchant — from back-to-school clothes at Michael’s Mission or Goody’s to back-to-school supplies from the Dollar Tree or Plateau Drug Center.

Among eligible back-to-school purchases are any clothing items, pencils, notebook paper, binders, or other school supplies, along with computers or computer equipment, backpacks or lunch bags, and similar items. The only stipulation is that the supplies must be purchased at a retailer in Scott County.

The contest start coincides with this weekend’s “tax free weekend,” which allows all those purchases to be made tax-free.

Receipts can be dropped off at the Scott County Visitor Center on U.S. Hwy. 27 in Helenwood or the Independent Herald’s office on Alberta Street in Oneida. Receipts should include the name and telephone number of the parent.

The contest deadline is Aug. 15. Four winners will be drawn, with one child featured per winner.

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