NorthwestCell is once again sponsoring its "12 Days of Giveaways" text message contest.
The promotion means Christmas may come a little early for several texters in five northwest Missouri counties, including Nodaway.
The local cellphone provider will be giving out more than $1,000 in prizes during the promotion, which began Dec. 9 and lasts until Dec. 20.
To enter, text the word "HOLIDAY" to the number 444888 once each day and key in "YES" when the reply comes. No area code is necessary. Texters will be automatically entered to win the prize of the day.
Participants need not be a NorthwestCell customer, so anyone with a texting provider can enter. Winners are chosen at random and notified by phone.
Prizes include gift certificates to businesses in Maryville and surrounding counties.
NorthwestCell General Manager Roger Bundridge said the goal is to encourage consumers to shop locally.
"It is a good way to show what businesses are out there, kind of a reminder," Bundridge said.
"Especially restaurants. Sometimes people want to get out of town, and this lets them know they can get away and still support small business."
Bundridge said that the "12 Days of Giveaways" grew from a similar contest the company sponsored for years.
"We want to do our part in supporting local businesses, and this is our way of doing it," Bundridge said. "There are a lot of good, successful businesses in northwest Missouri, and it's important to be reminded of that."
Other prizes include Northwest Missouri State University basketball game tickets, a massage, DVDs and a computer clean-up from Midwest Data Center.
"The economic health of our coverage area has strong roots at the local level, since money spent at local businesses is reinvested into our communities," Bundridge said.
"We believe that giving back to the customers is an important way for us to thank them for patronage, all while showcasing some of the local businesses that contribute to the vitality of our communities."
For more information on the contest, and to view a prize calendar, got to www.nwmcell.com, www.facebook.com/nwmcell or call (660) 582-3334.