Get ready to spend as inaugural cash mob comes to town

April 10, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

Everybody perusing YouTube knows about flash mobs — people dancing en masse to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” on public plazas, for instance — but a group of professionals is about to advance the concept in Issaquah.

Come April 16, business leaders plan to host a cash mob — a commerce-fueled cousin of ubiquitous flash mobs.

In a cash mob, a group of people descends on a business to buy, buy, buy. The destination is revealed through social media services. Then, the mob pops up at the business to browse and shop.

The 20- and 30-something business leaders in the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce — Young Issaquah Professionals, or YIPPIES for short — modeled the cash mob on similar events in other locales.

If you go

Young Issaquah Professionals Cash Mob

“The group sought an idea that was unique, energetic and added value to the community and to our chamber members” said YIPPIE Nathan Perea, chamber director of membership development. “For local businesses, an infusion of commerce like this can really go the extra mile.”

The identity of the local merchant and cash mob target remain under wraps. So, participants need to turn to the YIPPIES’ social media channels for clues.

“People who want to take part in our first mob and future mobs can like our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter to find out where we’ll be,” Perea said. “It’s going to be exciting to announce our first merchant.”

Organizers said most participants spend about $20 apiece, but any amount is acceptable.

The local event follows a successful National Cash Mob Day celebrated March 24.

YIPPIE Chairwoman Audrey Slade, of Meadow Creek Business Center, said the cash mob is a form of community service.

“The cash mob is a tool that this generation is using to accomplish a variety of tasks: supporting local business, creating meaningful connections through commerce and building buzz for our community,” she said.

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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