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Entries in Walmart (3)

Tuesday
Jul172012

Internet Votes to Send Rapper Pitbull to Alaska Walmart

Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- It's official. Miami Rapper Pitbull will be visiting the Walmart in Kodiak, Alaska, by the end of the month.

The rapper was part of a promotion with the retail giant in which he would visit the Walmart with the most "likes" on its Facebook page, but when a writer for The Boston Phoenix newspaper suggested it would be funny to send Pitbull to the most remote Walmart possible, people rallied to the cause.

The informal campaign -- promoted on Twitter under the hash tag #ExilePitbull -- took on on a life of its own.

While many who participated were Pitbull fans, others voted to send the rapper away because they don't like his music, and yet others took part because they thought the plan was funny.

As of Tuesday, Walmart's Kodiak location had more than 70,000 "likes" on its Facebook page.

Kodiak was the clear winner, although people around the country tried hard to lure Pitbull to a store near them.

"From Miami to St. Louis we saw hundreds of thousands of fans like their local Walmart Facebook page, but Kodiak was the winner," Walmart spokeswoman Sarah Spencer told ABC News on Tuesday.

The contest closed Monday.

In a video posted to YouTube on Tuesday, Pitbull -- whose real name is Armando Perez -- addressed the outcome of the contest. "I heard that Kodiak, Alaska, has the most likes due to someone that thinks he was playing a prank … but you've got to understand, I will go anywhere in the world for my fans," he said.

As for what the rapper will do once he's in Kodiak, those details are still being finalized, but Pitbull will "definitely be meeting the community and our store associates," Spencer said.

Further details of the upcoming visit -- which was expected to happen by the end of July -- will be shared within the next couple of days, she added.

On the Kodiak Walmart's Facebook page, the news was greeted with approval. People had "liked" the page from all over the nation, and from Colombia, Great Britain, Brazil and other countries around the world.

"Congratulations Walmart Kodiak!! I'm at the other end of the world (New Zealand) and am glad I could help a little. Enjoy!!" one poster wrote.

Another added: "Pitbull is indeed a good sport for maintaining a positive attitude for something that was initially intended as a prank. Hope all you Kodiak inhabitants have fun!!!"

Kodiak Island is about 225 miles southwest of Anchorage. It's home to the nation's largest Coast Guard base, and the island is known for its Kodiak brown bear population.

When it became clear that Kodiak's Walmart was pulling ahead in the votes, the rapper tweeted about bear repellent being available at the store. Spencer said staffers would likely have some for him as a gift.

He'll be prepared for bears, but he'll also need to dress for the weather.

According to Accuweather.com, the high on Kodiak Island is not expected to break 60 degrees over the next two weeks, and the forecast calls for rain.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jul022012

Internet Could 'Exile' Rapper Pitbull to Remote Alaskan Walmart

Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Miami rapper Pitbull is associated with all things caliente, but an online campaign could soon have him chilling on Kodiak, an Alaskan island.

The chart-topping rapper, who performs in English and Spanish, will visit the Walmart store in the city of Kodiak, if that store's Facebook page has the most "likes."

The idea came about after a writer for The Boston Phoenix newspaper thought it would be funny to send Pitbull -- whose real name is Armando Perez -- to the most remote Walmart possible.

The Kodiak Walmart has a significant lead in the contest. As of Monday evening, the store had more than 38,000 "likes" on its Facebook page.

But it's not over yet. Walmart spokeswoman Sarah Spencer said other Walmart shoppers have until July 16 to "like" their local stores and pull ahead of Kodiak.

"I know Pitbull is hoping his Miami Walmart shoppers start 'liking' their Facebook page," she said.

That would require some heavy lifting, with one Miami location -- in Miami Gardens -- registering just 569 "likes" on Monday evening.

"He's definitely coming to Kodiak if Kodiak wins," she said.

Pitbull, who is touring Europe, seems to be amenable.

"Wherever the fans want to have a party, I will be there," he said in an emailed statement sent Monday from Austria.

On Twitter, fans of the rapper -- and those who are tickled by the promotion -- are weighing in at the hashtag #ExilePitbull. Some seem to approve of the plan to send him very far away.

"Nothing made me happier today than finding out people are trying to send Pitbull to Alaska. God that guy sucks. Count me in!" one Twitter user wrote, while another added: "Hate Pitbull? Want to exile him to Alaska? Read here to find out how!"

Others aren't as open in their dislike of the rapper, but seem to approve of the promotion.

"I don't jump on board with just any idea, but sending Pitbull to the most remote Walmart in America? Yeah, I back that," one wrote, while another tweeted: "This is too hilarious everyone like the fb page."

And one girl from Kodiak is lobbying hard for the rapper’s arrival, posting the following tweet: "Kodiak, Alaskas zipcode is 99615. please send pitbull here."

Kodiak Island is about 225 miles southwest of Anchorage. It's home to the nation's largest Coast Guard base, and the island is known for its Kodiak brown bear population.

According to the 2010 census, an estimated 6,300 people live in the city of Kodiak.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun012012

Celine Dion, Lionel Richie Perform at Walmart Shareholders Meeting

Beth Hall/Bloomberg via Getty Images(BENTONVILLE, Ark.) -- Looks like Celine Dion’s recent voice problems, which caused her to cancel a slew of Las Vegas concerts earlier this year, are cleared up.

Dion was the closing act at the annual Walmart shareholders meeting in Arkansas on Friday, and brought down the house with her songs “The Power of Love,” “Love Can Move Mountains” and “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now.”  For “Love Can Move Mountains,” she was joined by two choral groups: The Arkansas Gospel Mass Choir and the Walmart Associate Choir.

At the event, which you can watch online, Celine also praised Walmart for supporting her over the past 20 years, giving a special shout-out to Walmart store #2050 in Henderson, Nevada.  She said she often goes there after her Las Vegas shows to stock up on essentials.  Celine will return to her show in Las Vegas on June 9.

The shareholders meeting, which is always a star-studded event, was hosted by Justin Timberlake, and also included a performance by Lionel Richie, who sang “Easy” and “All Night Long.”  Taylor Swift performed as well, but her set wasn’t included on the webcast of the event at the request of her record label.

The American Idol fan site MJsBigBlog.com says this was the first time in years that an American Idol star did not perform at the Walmart shareholders meeting.  It’s become a tradition for Idol winners to appear at the event: Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze and Scotty McCreery all sang at the meeting in the years they won the competition.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio