This is part of a series of articles to combat coulrophobia (the fear of clowns), educate the uninformed public about the consequences of masquerading as “scary clowns”, and defend #REALCLOWNS. CLICK HERE to read the other articles on the “creepy clown” stereotype.
Before you know it the stores will be full of Halloween merchandise.
Already Pennywise “creepy clown” images from Steven King’s IT films are appearing in Wal-Mart in anticipation of the new movie opening in September.
(If you’re scratching your head wondering “What’s so wrong with creepy clowns?”, then read my blog about why they are bad for the family entertainer business.)
So what can clowns do to prepare for this?
Here’s what I did:
I called Wal-Mart corporate stores (1-800-WALMART or 1-800-925-6278) and made my formal complaint.
I was very nice and friendly. I told the receptionist I found the Pennywise IT image on a t-shirt in the men’s department offensive to me and scary to children.
I also told her about the Mooseburger Camp’s All Star Clown Show that is produced in the city of Buffalo free for the public. If children are scared of clowns, it drastically impacts the attendance of the show.
The receptionist was very understanding and said she would forward the complaint to the head office and also to the store in Buffalo.
By explaining that people being afraid of this image directly impacts volunteer clowns who do so much for the very community in which Wal-Mart store was located, I was able to make an impression using rationale rather than raw emotion.
If you see scary images in stores you can do some things to help:
- If you are in the store, ask to talk to the store manager; in a pleasant way say you are offended by the product. (that gets their attention!)
- Thank them for taking the time to hear your concern.
- Once you are at home, contact the corporate office. You can find their information online. Or ask the manager of the store for the number.
- Always remain professional and keep it brief. Remember store managers are not always responsible for product in the stores, especially big box stores.
If the item cannot be removed from the store, you can ask that it not be put in such a prominent place.
Fight the good fight, people.
If we don’t speak up, nothing will change.
Back when the “creepy clown” craze swept the nation right before Halloween last year, we had a huge problem with disturbing clown merchandise being for sale. But enough folks complained to make one store remove those items. It felt like victory!
I wrote about it in this blog post, and I include a free download of a template for joining in the letter writing campaign to keep scary clown merch off the shelves. Please take a minute to read it and leave a comment.
Let’s steel ourselves this autumn for another round of Pennywise, Twisty, and other FAKE clowns ruining our good image.
Thank you for being a REAL clown!
- Make improvements to your performance and be better than before.
- Post photos of your fun clown friends with the hashtag #REALCLOWNS on social media
- Be a part of our letter-writing campaign to keep scary clown masks & costumes out of stores
- Hand out our cards educating people what a REAL CLOWN is (free download)
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Mooseburger Clown Arts Education has been running one of the world’s most well-rounded clown schools since 1996. Performers from all over the globe travel to Minnesota each summer for a fun and intensive clown training program. Each aspect of our clown camp is designed to meet your needs and boost your confidence as an entertainer.
Whether you want to join the circus, visit nursing homes, run your own birthday party business, paint faces, or twist balloons, there is something just for you at Mooseburger Clown Arts Camp.
Or call me toll-free to discuss your education and see if Mooseburger is the right fit for you: 800-973-6277