Dave can’t hide his parking ticket now

Our good friend Big Mike surprised us with a funny picture the other day: a screenshot of Google Earth’s view of the Sandbar.

What’s funny about that? Nothing, unless you happen to know that the gray SUV parked in front of the bar belongs to Daveā€”and if you look closely, you can see a gift from the City of Lawrence parking department.

Google Earth screen shot | www.thesandbar.com

Like any good downtown Lawrence employee, Dave does his part to keep the city of Lawrence running by accumulating his fair share of little yellow envelopes. Normally, he pays the $3 ticket before its due and his wife is never the wiser.

But sometimes he gets busted. Like when Google Earth captures evidence of his overtime parking.

P.S. Congrats to Big Mike, his lovely wife Anne and their little boy, who recently welcomed another bundle of joy to their family!

We’re One of 100,000

We’re still super excited over our “Favorite Places” window decal from Google, and we wanted to find out more about this awesome surprise.

According to the Official Google Blog, the company sent 100,000 decals to local business in the United States. They chose the businesses that were the most sought out and researched on Google and Google Maps.  These “Favorite Places” are located in over 9000 towns and in all 50 states. 

Another FAQ section that Google provided states that the selected businesses represent less than 1% of the 28 million businesses in the country. Exciting!

The reason behind it? It’s part of an overall effort to help provide people with the best local business results when trying to figure out where to go. They also plan to send out new waves of window decals to qualifying businesses. Apparently we were in the first round!

You can see a sample of Favorite Places in 20 of the largest U.S. cities here.

We haven’t hung the decal in the window yet, because we’re still trying to find a good spot that’s visible, but not so accessible that someone would steal it. And, I’m still trying to figure out how to scan the QR code- I downloaded the QuickMark app that the article recommended, but I haven’t had any luck getting the scan to work. Supposedly, once a clear scan is picked up, the app will bring up a page that has business info, hours, and reviews. 

Google has a fun (and kind of cheesy) little video that shows how all this works.

A Google Favorite Place

Peach surprised me with some very special mail the other day.

Google Maps (yes that Google!) sent us a letter congratulating us on being named a "Favorite Place on Google." According to the letter, their users found our business listing on Google 3731 times and requested driving directions or other information 269 times- all between July 1 and September 30 last year!

And, they included a super cool window decal that we can hang up! The tech-savvy sticker even includes a special bar code that people can scan with cameras on their phones, which apparently allows them to see our business listing on Google. I'm not really sure how that works, but maybe one of you will enlighten me.

(Perhaps Google sends letters and stickers to every business in an effort to encourage them to create/update their Google business listing, I don't know. But if that's the case, I don't want to know. I'd like to keep thinking we were popular enough to catch their attention. So don't burst my bubble, okay?)