Cash mob coming to Bead Biz

Published 3:57 pm Monday, September 17, 2012

By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist

The word is out — Twittered, Yelped, Facebooked and blogged — the first Cash Mob is set to happen at Bead Biz on Thursday, Sept. 20, from 6 until 8 p.m.

“We believe this is possibly the first event of its kind in the state,” said Bob Van Loan, Helena Business Association board director. “The concept originated in Buffalo, N.Y., only about a year ago. By nature it is a spontaneous event that relies on social media to advertise and get the word out.”

Helena HBA has been seeking new and diverse ways for the organization to bring its resources to helping local businesses, one business at a time.

The HBA advisory committee is made up of individuals with broad-based business knowledge who can help existing businesses with strategic planning, marketing and finance. They also welcome potential business owners who may have an idea or interest in developing a business, but do not have a business background.

This Cash Mob is a grassroots event designed to raise community awareness, introducing residents to local shopping options they have, but don’t necessarily use. The HBA expects other local business owners to attend this event and see it in action.

The suggested spending recommendation is $20 (not including tax) and Bead Biz owner Lora Lunsford will be offering not only beading supplies, but jewelry items—necklaces, bracelets and earrings — perfect for gifts.

Carmella’s Ice will be on hand, also, for tasty refreshment.

During the event, Bead Biz will have sign-up sheets on hand for free classes that will be offered in basic beading techniques. And, if you bring a friend who has never before visited Bead Biz, your friend will receive a $5 gift certificate.

“As a town we need to pull together to support our small businesses,” Lunsford said. “I have been in business here for 10 years now, but there are many residents who have no idea what is behind my front door.”

Lunsford, with a background in marketing and fashion merchandising, has always welcomed creative ways to encourage patronage and promoted with panache.

Bead Biz recently launched a new blog featuring news about design and fashion trends. See it at:


Laura Brookhart can be reached by email at