In a time when local businesses across the country are reeling from the pandemic and everyone could use an extra dose of joy, businesses in Christiansburg, Virginia are delighting the masses and getting some free marketing with a friendly sign war that has gone wildly viral.
It all started two weeks ago when Bridge Kaldro Music posted this message to Super Shoes, a neighboring business across the street: "Hey Super Shoes! Wanna start a sign war?"
After a few days, the shoe store took up the challenge: "Hey Bridge Kaldro! Our shoe strings are stronger than your guitar string."
It was on.
"Your shoestring never got anyone a date," wrote Bridge Kaldro.
"Keep your play dates," retorted Super Shoes. "We specialize in solemates."
Soon other businesses joined in, and the result is a friendly, socially-distanced flame game that's leaving people in stitches.
Radio station COOL 106.3FM shared a collection of the signs on Facebook in a post that's been shared nearly 400,000 times.
Kabuki Japanese Steakhouse hopped into the who's-better-for-a-date fray: "Shoes and strings help get the date, but we seal the deal."
To which Bridge Kaldro flung back: "What a 'croc.' IDK what stinks worse, your shoes or Kabuki's sign."
And that's when the puns began.
"You got to b-sharp to make good shoe-shi and we won't string you along," wrote Kabuki.
Then they got sassy.
"Y'all got Crocs, but we got Godzilla. We shreddin' this war like Kaldro shreds guitars."
And Super Shoes pushed back with a practical point.
"Mosh pits and raw fish: Both more dangerous than shoe shopping."
Then Bridge Kaldro called down the thunder on other businesses across the street.
"Anyone else? Come at me bro. Lookin' at you 2 across the road."
Soon a whole slew of businesses chimed in, including a pharmacy, church, gas station, and even a local library.
The Hampton Inn almost seemed to have the last word...
But it wasn't over.
More and more signs have popped up all over town. Someone even created a Christianburg, VA Sign War Facebook group so people could see how the battle is progressing. As of this morning, it has more than 21,000 members—and the signs just keep on coming.
Kayla Cumbee Walton
Even the sign shops in town got in on it.
The sign war is a positive for so many reasons, from the simple delight it's bringing to the people observing it to the dollars it's bringing to the businesses participating.
Ed Bridge, the owner of Bridge Kaldro, told WSLS 10 News that he had never heard of a sign war until the idea was suggested by an employee.
"I'm just so humbled because this is bigger than my little music store," Bridge said. "If we can put this whole area a little bit more on the map for people coming to visit, why not?"
Kabuki Japanese Steakhouse owner Yoshi Koeda said business has been booming since he joined in the sign war.
"It's amazing free advertisement for all of us," he said. "That's probably the best part of everything."
Who knew that one employee's idea to challenge another business to a sign war would escalate into something so epic? Just goes to show you how a little fun can go a long way.
Thank you, Christiansburg, for giving the whole world something to enjoy together. We definitely needed it.
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