Returning for its third consecutive year this Museum Store Sunday, with more museums than ever – both nationally- and Valley-wide – taking part this year.
Launched by the Museum Store Association (MSA), Museum Store Sunday is a shopping campaign encouraging consumers and museum visitors to consciously contribute to the success of each museum and cultural institution.
This year, the annual event aims to educate consumers worldwide about the importance of shopping in museum stores on Dec. 1.
This year's Scottsdale participants include the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA), and Scottsdale’s Museum of the West (SMoW).
The Shop@SMoCA and The Store @ the Center participated in Museum Store Sunday since the event began in 2017.
“Museum Store Sunday is very important for our stores,” said Charlotte Quinney, assistant retail manager at the Shop@SMoCA and the Store @ the Center. “As active participants in the Museum Store Association, this event allows us to engage with our loyal patrons, meet and introduce ourselves to new visitors, and to support the network of museum stores across the country. “
Quinney said both stores saw a positive turnout in the last two years.
Last year, the Shop@SMoCA made nearly $700 and The Store @ the Center made nearly $1,800.
In 2017, the Shop@SMoCA made just over $680 and The Store @ the Center made more than $2,220.
This year, both stores offers three deals: Shoppers will receive a 20 percent discount on purchases of $50 and over; both stores are holding a drawing for a $100 Friends Level ONE Membership; and shoppers will receive free hot apple cider as well as free admission to the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art.
“Participating in Museum Store Sunday offers the community a chance to support their local nonprofit museum and performing arts venue,” Quinney said.
Quinney added: “After shopping small and supporting community businesses on Small Business Saturday, Museum Store Sunday provides the opportunity to invest in local cultural institutions and by shopping with us, the opportunity to support Scottsdale Arts’ mission to deliver high-quality arts experiences and educational programs for local residents and global visitors.”
Further, the stores are a net revenue-generator, providing financial support for Scottsdale Arts’ exhibitions, programs and initiatives, said Meribeth Reeves, managing director of Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts.
“The stores generated as much as $100,000 in net revenue for Scottsdale Arts in past years,” Reeves added.
At the shops, customers can expect unique fine jewelry, art books, women in art and feminist-themed merchandise in support of SMoCA’s fall and upcoming spring exhibitions and more.
“The Store @ the Center is curated along performing arts lines with music-themed items, gorgeous housewares, beautiful children’s books featuring children from all backgrounds and incredible artwork. We also have a selection of apparel items for the fashionista in your house,” Reeves said.
This year, SMoW is hosting a “tasting event” featuring some of Senator Barry Goldwater’s favorite recipes; the special event is hosted by Goldwater’s Foods.
“We are very honored to welcome Barry Goldwater’s granddaughter Carolyn Goldwater, who will be a special guest at our store on Museum Sunday,” said SMoW CEO and Director Mike Fox.
SMoW participated in Museum Store Sunday the two years and approximately 5 percent of its operating budget, of $2.4 million, comes from its museum store sales.
“[Museum Store Sunday] is very important as it offers greater visibility for the museum and its shop with the Museum Store Association marketing support, which on average with museums has realized a 47 percent increase in the in-store sales during MSS,” Fox said.
Other promotions at SMoW this year include 50 percent off select books and merchandise and up to 20 percent off storewide items; plus, the first 15 shoppers spending $25 will receive a free gift bag, and the first 10 shoppers spending $50 get an individual SMoW membership valued at $45 or they can put the money toward upgrading their current membership.
“MSS offers a special shopping experience while helping support a nonprofit organization of the community,” Fox said. “Shopping with a purpose is a draw to a younger audience to help support a nonprofit museum and this makes them feel good about their spending.”
More than 1,200 museum stores representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia, 18 countries, and five continents will participate in Museum Store Sunday.
Last year, more than 700 museum stores participated, in-store gross sales increased by 47 percent and net sales increased by 42 percent, web gross sales increased by 126 percent and net sales increased by 79 percent, museum visitors increased by 11 percent, museum store visitors increased by 35 percent, and museum store transactions increased by 21 percent.
“When MSA launched Museum Store Sunday in 2017, we knew it was an opportunity to showcase museum stores with their unique mission-related products and meaningful experiences, but we didn’t realize its reach,” said Susan Tudor, president of the MSA Board of Directors. “With participating museums across North America, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Australia, we’re ecstatic to see our local, national, and international museum communities embrace this global day of museum store advocacy.”
All proceeds from store purchases directly support the missions and programs of museums.
“Museum stores create wonderful opportunities for visitors to interact with, and take home, unique items inspired by their museums’ missions, while also supporting the local economy,” said Laura Lott, president and CEO of American Alliance of Museums. “The Alliance is proud to be a supporter of Museum Store Sunday and hope this international day brings in new visitors who want to support museums’ vital work in an exciting way.”
For more information about Museum Store Sunday, visit museumstoresunday.org.