Willy Wonka-Style Golden Tickets Could Win You Free Parking

A busy Vermont downtown is offering three lucky people free parking for a year; all they have to do is eat chocolate.

The Downtown Brattleboro Alliance launched a campaign this week inspired by the beloved book and movie "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," hiding golden tickets in just three of 1,000 chocolate bars now for sale at select retailers and restaurants in downtown Brattleboro.

The lucky customers who find the golden tickets win free parking in Brattleboro for a year, which is valued at up to $400.

"Free parking's great," said Will Alderfer, who works in Brattleboro, adding that he may pick up one of the $3.25 chocolate bars.

Stephanie Bonin of the Downtown Brattleboro Alliance told necn the mission of the campaign is to get people excited about exploring and supporting independent businesses that are often the lifeblood of communities.

"It says Brattleboro is the fun, feisty community that we are," Bonin said of the golden ticket giveaway. "Downtowns create that environment to cultivate a community. Without a downtown, without a Main Street, it's really challenging to create a strong community."

Brattleboro chocolatier Dar Tavernier of Tavernier Chocolates made the bars, using dark chocolate and a tasty maple crunch.

"It's really been quite exhilarating to see how many people are excited by this," Tavernier beamed.

The promotion runs through May 14. For more information, click here.

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