Revamped Tri-Fun program offers food, venue deals
Get a digital pass to experience some of the Tri-Cities’ best locally-owned dining and entertainment options for a fraction of the cost.
Tri-Fun, a membership-based program providing deals at local eateries and venues, is growing under new ownership.
Jane Winslow, owner of WinSome Design in Richland, bought Tri-Fun from Preston House, owner of the Tri-City Papa John’s franchise, in September 2017. House launched Tri-Fun in December 2016.
WinSome Design, a brand development and marketing firm, rebuilt the e-commerce portion of the website to make it easier for participating venues and for members to redeem their rewards.
Winslow said she has grown membership about three times since she took over the business and has more than doubled the amount of participating venues.
“We reimagined it from the ground up to make the customer experience easy,” Winslow said. “We’re pro-business. I care about businesses succeeding. We needed to make it easier for us to sell the program, it has to be a no brainer and it has to be super slick.”
Here’s how it works: To redeem benefits, members use a special code online provided by the business.
Members can either buy an Experience Pass or a Dining Pass — a new membership option not previously available.
For a $50 annual membership, Experience Pass members can participate in more than 20 activities at 19 different venues, including chocolate candy making party at Baum’s House of Chocolate, a live concert and appetizer at Emerald of Siam, a glass fusing project at The Glass Punty, a watercolor paint and sip event at The Wet Palette: Uncork + Create, or ice skating at the Toyota Arena.
It also includes museum admission to the East Benton County History Museum and the Reach Museum, among other benefits.
The total value of the Experience Pass is $345, or the cost to visit each of the venues separately.
“The best benefit of the Tri-Fun Experience Pass is that we have things for everybody, for little kids, teens, as well as adults and seniors,” Winslow said.
The Dining Pass offers 10 buy one, get one free entrées that can be used at 20 different local restaurants, including Foodies, Foodies Too, Kimo’s, Emerald of Siam, Europa, Frost Me Sweet, Nomad, Fast & Curryous and more. The total value of the dining pass is $225.
For participating businesses, Tri-Fun is a free marketing program.
WinSome Design invests in direct mail, social media, video, streaming media for digital downloads, as well as feather flags, table tents and rack cards to promote Tri-Fun membership and benefits to customers.
“It’s great for small businesses because they don’t have a ton of money to put into marketing, it’s slow organic growth,” she said. “We help with that.”
The businesses have to sign a contract agreeing to participate for a year. There’s no fees associated for businesses to participate at this time.
Becky Brice, owner of The Wet Palette in Richland, has signed on.
“I wouldn’t continue to be a venue if I wasn’t experiencing a positive return for my business, just in the amount of branding and exposure I get for my business and associating with other venues that are local and striving to create a culture in Tri-Cities that shops local,” she said.
“I was a venue before the overhaul and Jane made it 10 to 20 times better,” Brice said. “She has always been attentive and helpful. She knows because she has also built a small local business.”
Another benefit to participating companies is the passes provide them with an up-sell opportunity on items and services not provided through the pass.
“When Preston approached me that summer, he was looking for a business that he knew would take care of his venues,” Winslow said. “To the businesses we partner with, we are a free marketing program. We market them as part of Tri-Fun to drive customers to their business. On the customer-facing side, we provide a heck of a deal to locally owned-businesses and restaurants.”
Experience passes are sold per person — not family — but passes can be shared among family members.
For example, if you buy four Experience Passes, each pass must be used by a different person. So even though you buy four, your two children cannot each take two classes at Academy of Children’s Theatre, valued at up to $100 each. Each child could take a class and each could take a friend, resulting in all four passes being used.
Gift cards for Tri-Fun passes also are available.
In the future, Winslow hopes to add more venues, restaurants and experiences — especially in the theater and performing arts sector — and offer additional passes.
“We’re picky about who we add and why. I want locally owned-businesses and different experiences, no franchises or licensees,” Winslow said.
“I would love to take this on the road and build this in other small markets as well,” she said.