Old Town Cape announces winner of shopping spree

Thursday, December 6, 2007
Old Town Cape downtown shopping spree winner Kirk Metje posed with the $2,000 worth of Christmas Dollars he will spend before the end of the year. (Kit Doyle)

Christmas came early for Kirk Metje.

Metje was selected as the winner of a $2,000 shopping spree sponsored by Old Town Cape, the Southeast Missourian and 20 downtown businesses. Metje's entry was selected from 747 hopefuls who visited 10 of the 20 retailers on Friday and Saturday, said Marla Mills, executive director of Old Town Cape.

The annual contest awards Christmas Dollars, good at participating merchants, as part of the promotion of the open house for downtown businesses.

The number of entries was encouraging, Mills said, because of the number of retail locations each contestant was required to visit. "This was a good indication of how many people were there," Mills said. "A lot of people who came down to the activity."

Metje, president of G&M Trailers Inc., a semitrailers and storage company near the Interstate 55 exit at Nash Road, is a lifelong Cape Girardeau resident. He's a regular downtown shopper, he said, and remembers when downtown was the retail hub of the city.

"I used to go downtown, when Buckner's/Ragsdales was open, and we would buy Hush Puppy shoes, jeans and Boy Scout stuff."

As for how he'll use the money, Metje said he's not sure. He'll visit several stores, he said. At 47, Metje has a married daughter and son in college, so some of the money will likely be spent on them.

"I will probably pick out four or five places to go and decide what to do," he said. "My daughter bought a house this summer, and I might buy her something."

The contest was limited to people older 18 who were not employees of a downtown business or the Southeast Missourian.

Old Town Cape is the promotional agency that works for historic preservation and to support business activity in much of the area between West End Boulevard and the Mississippi River.


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