Left to Right: Larry Van Dusen, Winner Mary Van Dusen, and Tamaya Loewe

On Wednesday, November 8, the winning Passport was drawn live on the air at WRJC 92.1FM, and Mary Van Dusen of Necedah became $1000 richer!

The Passport to Juneau County 2017 – primarily a tourism promotion that was open to local residents as well – was conceived and launched by the tourism division of Juneau County Economic Development Corporation (JCEDC), called Juneau County Area Tourism (JCAT), headed up by Tamaya Loewe.

“The purpose for this particular promotion was to leverage the thousands of visitors already coming into Juneau County, via Woodside Sports Complex for example, and encourage them to step off-campus and spend additional tourism dollars throughout the county” says Loewe.

The passport booklets resemble a typical travel passport and have participating local businesses listed throughout.  Tourists and locals obtained a passport for free then visited each of the businesses included to get their passport page stamped.  Completed passports were turned in and eligible for the $1000 cash prize drawing.

“Although no purchase was required to get the passport stamped, many of the visitors did buy items from those businesses” Loewe states, “and considering the dozens of completed passports turned in, the average customer acquisition cost for each participating business was less than $5”

Winner Mary Van Dusen was surprised to get the phone call announcing her prize.  She and her husband Larry wore big smiles when they picked up the $1000 check today.  “It was fun and I had never been to half these businesses before” Mary Van Dusen said, “this promotion sure worked great because it was my first time in Wisconsin River Meats and I spent $96 that very day”  Husband Larry Van Dusen adds “and a week later I went back and spent a hundred more!”

The Van Dusens are Necedah residents.  Mary worked as a special education teacher for 34 years before she retired from the Necedah School District.  They are both very active in the community – Mary frequently volunteers at local veterans’ facilities bringing whatever comforts she can to the residents, and Larry regularly cooks meals for people in need.  When asked what they plan to do with the $1000, Mary replied “our daughter is struggling with the costs of college right now and this will really help her out.”

The next Juneau County Passport promotion is coming together right now to encourage residents to Shop Locally this holiday season.  Look for it to launch before Thanksgiving and close down around New Year’s.  Multiple chances to win cash prizes – wouldn’t you like to get paid to do your holiday shopping this year?


Contributed by Tamaya Loewe