Toby Wells is all the buzz around town these days.
Designated the “Most Interesting Man in Woodland Park,” Wells stars in a commercial shown in prime time on Fox21. Filmed by a crew from the television station, the commercial is the first in a series about Woodland Park funded by Park State Bank & Trust.
Wells is filmed engaging in three activities. First, he is caught golfing at Shining Mountain where he hits a hole in one off of the first tee onto the 18th green. He then squeezes grapes to make his own wine and chills it with his icy, cold stare. And finally, he prepares to ride his bike backwards across Crystal Lake and up Pikes Peak.
“The commercials are another way, another technique, for putting the city on the map,” Wells said. “This is a teaser; there will be more.”
Wells admits to being tapped by friends as well as strangers who recognize him as the hero in the first commercial, anecdotal evidence that the 30-second strip is watched and remembered.
A resident of Woodland Park since 1946, Wells is getting a huge kick out of being featured on prime-time television five times a week. As his name is bandied about, in Colorado Springs as well as Woodland Park, Wells is working up to the next series of commercials that show him having fun in the city. “I’ll do anything to help Woodland Park,” he said.
In addition to Wells’ heroics, the commercials feature a monthly calendar of events at their conclusion.
At $28,000 for the year’s contract with Fox21, the money comes from Park State’s marketing fund, said Tony Perry, the bank’s president. “The commercials are a continuation of our efforts to promote the businesses in Woodland Park,” he said. “The goal is to have people drive up the mountain to support our community.”
Rather than focusing on, or even naming, the businesses, the commercials are intended to attract interest from the region. With 27,000 cars traveling through town, whether local or not, the idea is to get people to stop and shop. “We want people to see for themselves what we have up here, restaurants, retail and attractions,” Perry said.
Granted, naming Wells as the “most interesting” man is a takeoff on the national television commercials by Dos Equis about the most interesting man in the world, but Perry isn’t concerned about a possible “copycat” label.
“We want people to know we have a sense of humor, that we don’t take ourselves too seriously,” Perry said.
While there is a certain amount of jest in Wells’ running around the area, the underlying theme is to put the city out in front of potential consumers. “We expect to battle economic head winds for the next two years,” Perry said. “Park State Bank is helping to market the entire community, not just the bank.”
The contract is for four commercials filmed somewhere in Woodland Park with Wells as the star. As part of the promotion, the project manager, Mike Perini, of Perini & Associates, seeks ideas and themes from people in the community.
“There are other interesting people in Woodland Park, so you never know,” Perini said. “That’s what’s fun about this, to try and show that Woodland Park is really fun, that we’re cool.”
The film strips are part of the Targeted Value project at the television station that includes 12 other business along the Front Range. “This is an incredible opportunity,” Perini said.
Figures released from Fox21 show that the station reaches 171,000 adult viewers in the 25-54 range, people for whom Woodland Park offers amenities such as hiking, biking and shopping