Welcome Wagon isn't quite what it was since it first launched, but its mission hasn't changed.
Welcome Wagon has made its way back to the east metro, including Oakdale, Woodbury, Stillwater, Lake Elmo, White Bear Lake, Maplewood and St. Croix County in Wisconsin.
"Because we haven't had a presence in the east metro for so long there is a kind of hunger from the businesses," said Monica Liska, a community marketing executive for portions of the east metro.
The 83-year-old company has evolved over the years, Liska said.
"I remember being a young bride and moving into a new town and back in those days they (Welcome Wagon) would actually send a basket to your house," Liska said. "A little old lady would bring a basket of goodies from the local business partners."
Since then, the model has changed since many people aren't home quite as often any more, Liska said.
Now, new residents moving to Oakdale will receive their welcome in the form of a booklet featuring local businesses in Oakdale. The booklet is no cost to residents.
"When they start paging through the booklet they will be introduced to local businesses," Liska said. "So if I moved to Stillwater or Oakdale, I would need to find a dentist or decide what's going to be my favorite grocery store. Where will we have our kitchen cabinets replaced or get lawn care?"
The businesses featured in the Welcome Wagon booklet pay an annual contract to be a part of the booklet. If a business is referred to Welcome Wagon, the referee receives a $50 credit either to their account or by check.
"These are businesses that are actively looking for new customers," Liska said.
Often times the booklet will feature special offers from the businesses in order to entice the new residents to give their business a try.
"Our objective is to get customers to go to that business' site, walk through their door and from there the business gets that customer to be loyal," Liska said.
Welcome Wagon prices their booklets for businesses by the 12-month rolling average of homeowners.
The Oakdale and Maplewood area see approximately 56 new homeowners per month. The Stillwater area, which includes Marine on St. Croix all the way to Bayport, sees about 44 new homeowners per month. St. Croix County in Wisconsin (including Hudson) sees about 85 new homeowners per month, according to Liska.
"A lot of businesses are still kind of on rough ground or getting their footing again," Liska said. "We really want to help them."
For more information about Welcome Wagon contact Monica at firstname.lastname@example.org