Val's halla makes bid for Super Bowl commercial

Voters can help legendary Oak Park record shop win national contest

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By Anna Lothson

Staff Reporter

It's pretty expected the Super Bowl broadcast will come with a dose of chip, beer and commercials.

But a local suburban record store? That would be a new one, especially with the average $3.5 million price tag of a 30-second commercial. But Val's halla Records, a 40-year-old Oak Park shop, has entered a small-business contest to win a free 30-second television commercial during the big game.

The Intuit Small Business Big Game contest works by having businesses share their stories, with a select few earning the chance to win votes from the public. So far, Val's has made it to Round 2 of the voting process. Twenty semi-finalists will make it the Round 3, and Intuit employees will select the final four. The final four are sent back out for a public vote to choose the big winner.

The record store owner, Val Camilletti, explained on her store's contest page that the shop is "seen as a square in the quilt of our customer's lives."

"Grandparents tell their grandchildren about music they bought. …We are woven in the fabric of the community of music lovers, locally and also around the world. In an industry rife with trivia, our relentless pursuit of answers, even if they don't result in sales, keeps us a destination."

Don't believe the claim? Ask Val anything — there's a good chance she's got the answer. In fact, it's almost a guarantee.

"The ultimate goal, to my mind, is to offer information and services to every single customer regardless of whether or not it leads to a purchase," Val wrote.

To participate in the contest, Camilletti must post a 90-second video telling the story of the record store. This week a local documentary maker volunteered to shoot and produce the video, which should be available for viewing soon.

Those interested in voting can do so until Oct. 13. To read more about the contest, or to vote for Val's, click here. Voters can vote once a day. 

Email: Twitter: @AnnaLothson

Reader Comments

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others in the area  

Posted: October 8th, 2013 6:02 PM

Additionally, there may be people that live and work in OP/RF that have IL businesses in neighboring towns that need support as well. I am glad you have found a business that is important to you to vote for every day, and I hope others find a business that is equally important to them as well. Democracy at it's finest: be an informed voter and know your options.

others in the area  

Posted: October 8th, 2013 5:58 PM

and it hurts my heart to see some business men & women who work very hard every day to create businesses & hire community members not get the advantage of free marketing to gander votes. I simply stated, without getting into it, that there are others in the area competing too. Who am I to say people should or shouldn't vote for Val or another business vying for this? I am simply saying make an informed decision & see all the others that are competing. They passed round 1 too, so they hold value

michael from Oak Park   

Posted: October 5th, 2013 4:15 AM

In response to "others in the area," all I can say is that you are most likely not originally "from the area." Having grown up in Oak Park and spent my life living and traveling all around the country, I can say with confidence that anyone from "the area" wouldn't pit Val against the BS that comes up when you search our area code. She is an Oak Park institution and the operator of a truly unique and profound business that is ONE OF A KIND. Val is Oak Park. Your comment hurts my heart.

Jeff Schroeder from Oak Park  

Posted: October 4th, 2013 3:31 PM

As they say, nothing ventured, nothing gained. Good luck Val.

ric from stickney  

Posted: October 3rd, 2013 7:55 PM


Anna from Wednesday Journal  

Posted: October 3rd, 2013 7:12 PM

Thanks for that information. I was unaware. I'll make sure to look into the other businesses.

others in the area  

Posted: October 3rd, 2013 5:46 PM

There are other companies/businesses/organizations competing for this commercial spot as well.... type in Oak Park, IL or River Forest, Il in the search box and find your favorite one!

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