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Snowfall leads to free furniture for thousands of customers

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Art Van Furniture is refunding almost 3,000 shoppers after a unique, first-time promotion. The Michigan-based company has nearly a hundred stores throughout the Midwest.

Art Van Furniture held a “Let it Snow” sale on January 17. If Fort Wayne International Airport Weather Station, Chicago O’Hare Airport Weather Station and Toledo Express Weather Station measured snowfall of three inches or more between 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. on February 1, Art Van Furniture would refund 100% of all purchases of furniture, mattresses, big screen TVs and flooring (including sales tax and delivery fees).

Fort Wayne tripled that snowfall, but Chicago and Toledo beat the three inch requirement by a landslide:

Fort Wayne: 9 inches

Chicago: 16.2 inches

Toledo: 10 inches

“Our goal was to usher in winter with fanfare, fun and lots of free furniture,” Art Van Elslander, founder and chairman of Art Van Furniture said in a statement. “They say good things come in threes, and three inches of snow, combined with millions of dollars in savings, is most definitely a good thing for our Fort Wayne, Chicago and Toledo guests.”

Customers didn’t have to purchase a minimum amount of furniture, but they did have to pay for it in full by January 31. Art Van Furniture had everything insured, so this promotion won’t cost them either.

“We were hoping it would snow because we wanted to partake in this fun and make those customers happy, happy, happy. It’s Art Van’s way of having fun with our customers, and we do different events throughout the year,” store manager for Art Van Furniture’s Fort Wayne location Jeff Turza said.

Turza said at least 50 to 60 customers are getting free furniture from the Fort Wayne location, including Kendra Geiger. She actually didn’t know about the sale and just happened to be furniture shopping with her mom. Geiger went in just looking for a bed, and walked out with a lot more.

“I bought the bed, two nightstands, a chest of drawers, a mattress, and box springs.”

That adds up to more than $2200, but Geiger won’t pay a dime now. She said she watched the weather very closely on Sunday.

“I was pretty excited. I was thinking all I need is three inches, and they were saying six to ten, and I think we got nine. So, I was looking out the window and watching it pound us with snow and I was like, oh my gosh, is this really happening- what are the odds? I’m going to save more than 2 grand, which is just crazy.”

Geiger just moved into a new apartment, and said the extra money will be very helpful with the transition.

“Well, I still need to get some other stuff for my apartment, so I’ll probably get a nicer television now or something. Obviously, it’s going to be good for rent. I mean what are the odds of it happening. I don’t really like snow to be honest, but ya, best snow day ever,” Geiger said.

Art Van Furniture said customers should expect a reimbursement check in about six to eight weeks.