Colleyville Hopes Free Gift Card Program Helps Support Local Businesses During Pandemic

This is the city's third gift card program since the pandemic started

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The city of Colleyville is sending thousands of residents a little love ahead of Valentine's Day by giving away gift cards to help support local businesses affected by the pandemic.

About 10,000 households will get a gift card to use in the city. 

“The postal service received a big stack of these gift cards and they put them in every mailbox,” Colleyville Assistant Manager Mark Wood said.

On Monday, city staff will hand-deliver the gift cards to firefighters, police officers, local schools and hospitals.  

“We’ve heard lots of stories from local businesses about how helpful this program is and how it helps pay a rent payment and helps keep employees on the payroll,” Wood said. 

This is the city's third gift card program of the pandemic. The latest round begins this weekend and runs through March 15.

"Residents have to use their gift card by March 15," Wood said. "Businesses then turn the gift cards back to the city, and they get a check for the number of gift cards that they have."

The city also plans to expand the program to include teachers, healthcare workers and first responders in surrounding cities. 

At Benny’s Cafe, customers are spending Cupid’s currency. 

“We want to support local businesses," customer Chris Pounds said. "We love Benny’s. We love coming here." 

Cafe owner Benny Polisi said he was forced to shut down for six weeks at the start of the pandemic. 

For Benny's, 2021 is off to a slow but steady start.  

“Business jumped a little bit, but it’s not nearly what it was," Polisi said. "I hope it’ll get better, so let’s pray."

Polisi has received dozens of gift cards as payment and hopes people spread the love.

“My message is, keep doing it guys,” says Polisi. 

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