AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – The Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce‘s ‘Holiday Gift Card Match’ program is back, offering a substantial $13,000 investment in local businesses, led by UMassFive College Credit Union.

UMassFive College Credit Union takes the helm with a $2,500 investment in the Amherst Area Gift Card program. This commitment is matched by Curran & Keegan Financial, contributing another $2,500. The collective support extends with backing from sponsors bankESB and the Amherst Business Improvement District, resulting in a total match of $7,500.

Craig A. Boivin, Vice President of Marketing at UMassFive, expressed the credit union’s dedication, stating, “At UMassFive, one of our core beliefs is that when our local businesses succeed, we all succeed. We are humbled to play the lead role in supporting this important shop-local initiative heading into the holiday season.”

The initiative allows the Amherst Area Gift Card program to sell 300 $50 gift cards at a discounted price of $26 each, with a $1 service charge per card. These specially matched cards will be exclusively available at the Visitor Information Center at 35 South Pleasant St. in Amherst, starting at 10 a.m. on Thursday, November 30.

Sales are limited to two gift cards per person or family, with transactions taking place in person only on a first-come, first-served basis. No advance sales or reservations will be accepted.

To express appreciation to patrons supporting the local initiative, UMassFive College Credit Union will provide a cup of hot cocoa to all who purchase the matched gift cards on November 30.

The launch of this year’s Holiday Amherst Area Gift Card match day on November 30 sets the stage for Amherst-wide holiday events promoting local businesses. These include the Ever Merry Maple Lighting on Friday, December 1, at 4 p.m. at the North Common in downtown Amherst, and a Sip & Shop Stroll with a Maker’s Market on Thursday, December 14.

Claudia Pazmany, Executive Director of the Amherst Area Chamber, emphasized the impact of supporting local businesses, stating, “UMassFive College Credit Union continues to find ways to support local. Together with our other sponsors, they demonstrate the value of small businesses and their positive social and economic impact in our communities. They know that supporting our small businesses contributes to our local economy, creates jobs, and nurtures local innovation and growth. Together, they are helping you prioritize local this holiday season.”

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