Chow Bella

The Gelato Spot Copies Stingray Sushi and Puts Up Presidential Campaign Signs Around Town, Owner Insists It's About Politics -- Not (Relatively) Cheap Advertising

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Created by Jason Rose of Rose, Moser and Allyn Public Relations in Scottsdale, the signs show Suzy Stingray, the restaurant chain's Japanese anime character, alongside sayings like, "Obama cares about our sushi" and "Mitt bit my sushi."

Plato, who is friends with some of the people at Stingray, said he thought the campaign was creative but wanted The Gelato Spot to take a different approach.

"They put one candidate on each sign so some people may think they're biased. We didn't want to do that," Plato says. " And their humor is different than ours. We just wanted to play off the names of the flavors."

Like Stingray, The Gelato Spot formed a federal political-action committee (PAC) called Locals for Gelato of Tempe to be able to legally place the signs.

And although Plato tells me the cost of starting a PAC is zero, the action for a restaurant to do so is not without risks. In a recent article, the Republic reported that Phoenix spokeswoman Stephanie Ribodal Romero said that although the signs are legal due to being election signs from a PAC, Stingray has obviously "found a loophole" under city and state regulations for political signs.

So why aren't other restaurants doing it?

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld