Cash mob set for Saturday in downtown Riverhead

BARBARAELLEN KOCH FILE PHOTO | All you need is $20 to take part in Saturday's cash mob in downtown Riverhead.

A mob will descend on downtown Riverhead Saturday.

But there’s no need to worry, said event planner and founder Nancy Swett. This mob will be there to help local businesses.

From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. — rain, snow, or shine — Ms. Swett will organize a “cash mob,” a social media-driven event where people come with $20 in cash to spend at local businesses on Main Street. Customers are free to spend their money however they like, and can get special deals from businesses participating in the event. The idea, she said, is to show people the value of downtown businesses.

“Sometimes people say, there’s nothing down there to buy but there really is,” Ms. Swett said. “But people have to explore. They have to find these things.

The event was coordinated after a successful cash mob brought about 100 people to Bellport recently, she said. Within a week, an event was prepared for Riverhead, the first of its kind for downtown shops.

Some local business owners have praised the mob idea, saying it’ll open visitor’s eyes to places they wouldn’t normally buy from downtown.

“We’re hoping it brings people downtown who have never been downtown before,” said Ray Pickersgill, president of the Riverhead Business Improvement District and owner of the Robert James & Spa on West Main Street. “It’ll show them we have deals just like Route 58.”

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