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‘Cash mob’ aims to bring relief to Serio’s



@amandadrane
Wednesday, January 11, 2017

NORTHAMPTON — Serio’s Market may be struggling, but the community is rallying around them — literally, in the form of a “cash mob.”

Northampton Radio Group — 93.9 the River, WHMP and Hits 94.3 — is hosting the cash mob Wednesday at Serio’s from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. They invite the public to come sample free snacks, enter for prizes and, of course, spend money at the beloved neighborhood shop.

The family-owned market on State Street has been struggling financially since its former manager, Christina Cavallari, died suddenly in 2014. Wholesale provider Bozzuto’s Inc. filed a suit in Hampshire Superior Court on Nov. 10 alleging the store owed more than $32,000. Cavallari’s stepdaughter Jaimie Golec, whose father owns the business, said Serio’s has also fallen behind on energy bills.

Golec said Tuesday she hopes the cash mob will remind people of the things Serio’s has that others don’t, like its prepared foods, its meat counter and the array of locally produced products.

“We’re one of two butchers in town. People really need to know that,” she said. “If you want to save Serio’s, make this commitment to stop in twice a week. There’s several things we do really well.”

The River will be broadcasting live from Serio’s during the event.

“Our station has always stressed the importance of supporting local businesses and organizations in our Valley,” Program Director Monte Belmonte said in a press release. “When listeners hear of a beloved business in jeopardy and ask us to use our airwaves to help them out, we listen. And that is what happened when the news of Serio’s financial troubles was reported. Our listeners have proven through previous cash mobs and fundraising endeavors that they are very generous and value the importance of banding together to help each other out.”

Mark Lattanzi, promotions director for the group, said news of the upcoming event has already lead to an uptick on a Go Fund Me page for Serio’s.

“The general theme of cash mobs is to find a locally owned business that needs a boost,” he said. “It’s already starting to make an impact, which is great.”

Amanda Drane can be contacted at adrane@gazettenet.com.