FIRST ON 3: Local jeweler Alan Perry pays out after making a big promise

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Submitted: Mon, 02/14/2011 - 2:43am
Updated: Mon, 02/14/2011 - 2:51am

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Mother Nature saw Alan Perry’s bet and doubled it. 6.5 inches of snow fell on Asheville Christmas Day.

“The week leading up was wonderful ’cause every day I’m checking the computer and the Asheville weather, and every day, it looked better and more promising. Then the day arrived, and every hour, I’m checking the total accumulations, so it was a lot of fun.” Michael McGarrity took a chance on the weather and bought an annual Christmas ornament and a watch for his wife. He called the promotion genius and said he’ll definitely take part again.

“It’s increased our traffic flow tremendously and increased our customer base. Our customer base has risen. Now that we’re giving money back, there’s a whole lot of happy people in town,” said Perry’s Emporium owner Alan Perry.

John Finn is one of those happy people, but money isn’t the only thing making him smile. “We were coming up to find a ring for her, and the urge just got me. That was it.”

“He brought me into Perry’s, and I thought I was just going Christmas shopping. And he proposed in front of the Christmas tree, and I selected blue sapphire,” said Finn’s fiancé, Barbara Wilson.

And when her fiance realized that blue sapphire was free, he could hardly believe it. “I said, you’re kidding. We really got the ring for free and the whole bit? She said, yeah. I said, good, we can invest the money back with Perry.”

“I said, oh yes, I get to get more jewelry,” laughed Wilson.

It’s safe to say the “Let it Snow” promotion was a success, so Perry decided to try out another holiday. “We did the second chance promotion for Valentine’s Day is Asheville again, and that promotion was about a 60 percent increase over last year over the same two weeks, so it was just amazing that people came in.”

But the forecast calls for sunshine and a high of 60 degrees on Valentine’s Day in Asheville… maybe next time.

Perry said the “Let it Snow” promotion will definitely happen again, but it may not be Asheville that he bets on.

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