East Street envy: Lucky shopper's cash boost for wedding
MARY-Louise Keyworth's love of shopping is near enough to keep the local economy afloat.
The Rockhampton woman was one of countless who packed in as Kern Arcade became a standing-room only mass of shoppers eager for their shot at a $35,000 grand prize.
The Envy East Street campaign was a first-of-its-kind bid to support local businesses, and labelled a success by key driver, Kerry Peel.
For the winner, Mary-Louise Keyworth, it meant wedding planning became $1100 easier before she ties the knot.
Unbeknown to her fiance, the Rockhampton local had bought up big in the city heart in the hopes her loyalty with local retailers would net a $35K return.
Mary-Louise weaved through the masses as her name was randomly selected from a barrel of entries to choose a numbered envelope, containing a prize, from a wall of many.
Due to walk down the isle in a matter of days, Mary-Louise had high hopes the whopping $35K prize would cover all her wedding needs as she chose her lucky number, three.
It was her birth year, number 89, which held the prize; though $1100 was nothing to turn her nose up at. She was "stoked" with her winnings, which will make a dent in the funds she has poured into her beloved local stores.
"We don't usually win anything, but shopping locally has definitely paid off this time," she said.
Mary-Louise had shopped at Phil Peel Jewellers, Propaganda, Coopers, her favourite store Popaganda and her partner's, Marc Bunt Menswear.
She is a big supporter of buying local, and knows most retailers by name.
"It's definitely very competitive now with online and it's just a more convenient place versus having to go down south and shop there," she said.
Ms Peel said she was as surprised as anyone at the hoards of people who packed into the arcade, and later spilled into the greater CBD following the promotion.
She said East Street Envy had become a catchphrase in the weeks since it was launched, and this promotion was the first of many in an ongoing collaborative effort to support local businesses.
Ms Peel said 11 participating businesses complemented rather than competed with each other, and included Coopers, Propaganda, Phil Peel Jewellers, Mark Bunt Menswear, Stewarts, She's All That, Swarv Menswear, Willow & Ivy, Soaked Swimwear, D's Fine Jewellery & Accessories and Shoes on East.
"That's what was great about it, we weren't just catering to one kind of person or one kind of look," she said.
"It was just across a whole broad range of people, men women of all ages could shop anywhere in East St get something that suited them and they were able to enter the competition."