Giant Food 'Bears' Down on Fun

Berenstain Bears Treehouse, Snowflake Search augmented reality game reach stores
Giant Foods
Photograph courtesy of Giant Food

Giant Food Stores has introduced new initiatives to make their stores more fun for families.

At its flagship store in Camp Hill, Pa., the company unveiled the Berenstain Bears Treehouse this week, updating a play area that has been in the space since 2005. Separately, Giant said 15 other stores in the Harrisburg area are rolling out a kid-friendly augmented reality game designed to engage and entertain children during their visit to the store.

Mike Berenstain, the second-generation author and illustrator of "The Berenstain Bears" series, joined Giant President Nicholas Bertram at an unveiling ceremony in Camp Hill this week. As a part of the launch, Berenstain hosted two readings for local children and signed autographs, while kids enjoyed healthy bear-themed snacks, took photos with costumed Berenstain Bears characters, completed a treehouse activity and received a free Berenstain Bears book.

“Simplifying the shopping experience for the busy families we serve, so they have time to focus on what matters most—each other—is a constant priority for our team,” said Bertram. “Since being introduced in 2005, our Treehouse space has been a safe and fun place for kids to be kids, one that parents can feel good about their kids being in as they shop." 

"The Berenstain Bears" stories were first created in the 1960s by Philadelphians Stan and Jan Berenstain, with stories that offer simple solutions to timeless challenges faced by everyday families. Bertram also stated that as a renowned Pennsylvania-based brand, The Berenstain Bears were a natural fit for Giant in its efforts to better connect with area families.

Giant Berenstain Bears Treehouse

Photograph courtesy of Giant Food Stores

“The Berenstain Bears offer an engaging and relatable approach to helping kids and families navigate life in a positive way. Giant and the Bears make perfect partners because of our common focus on supporting families and communities,” said Berenstain. 

Besides adding the familiar characters of Mama, Papa, Brother, Sister and Honey Bear, the new Berenstain Bears Treehouse at Giant encourages imaginative play in an environment that inspires healthy eating, physical fitness and good health practices. The space includes a reading nook, plus an area for coloring.

In 2020, Giant plans to remodel the Treehouse child care spaces into Berenstain Bears Treehouses at five additional stores: the Linglestown Road store in Harrisburg, Pa.; the stores in Jennersville, Royersford and Willow Grove, Pa.; and the Eldersburg, Md., Martin's location.


Photograph courtesy of Giant Food Stores

“Having read these books as a kid myself and reading them to my own kids years later, the stories still resonate today, and I know kids and adults alike are going to love our new and improved treehouse, brought to life by the beloved Berenstain Bears," Bertram said. 

Augmented Reality

Giant’s stores in Harrisburg this week introduced the Snowflake Search, a game in which shoppers can use their phones to seek out computer-generated content overlayed in stores. The activity offers customers the opportunity to earn up to 300 Choice Rewards points per game and a total of 1,500 points through Jan. 30.

Snowflake Search was developed in collaboration with Schiefer Chopshop, an Irvine, Calif.-based media and creative agency. It is believed to be the first web-based application of augmented reality (AR) in this capacity by a U.S. grocery retailer. While other companies are using AR to provide information on products, Giant is harnessing the technology to add fun to an everyday task.

Giant Snowflake

Photograph courtesy of Giant Food Stores

“As a parent, I know firsthand how challenging a trip to the grocery store can be with young children, especially during the holiday season,” said Kimberly Mack, manager of digital strategy and media for Giant Food Stores. “Our Snowflake Search game delivers on our commitment to innovation and our promise to the families we serve by making the weekly task of grocery shopping a bit more fun for our younger customers and a bit easier for mom and dad, too.”

To play, customers scan a QR code on special in-store signage with their smartphones. An audio introduction by a snowman will direct users to search for six unique snowflake signs throughout the store. Each snowflake triggers an interactive character surprise on their phone, such as a polar bear juggling clementines and bananas in the fruit section. Customers will be able to track the characters they’ve already found and access hints to find the remaining ones.

Members of Giant’s Choice Rewards will earn 50 points for each character found, with the ability to earn a total of up to 300 points each time they play (up to five games). Points can be redeemed for discounts on gas or be converted to dollars to save directly on their total bill or for bonus offers, such as discounted or free products.



More from our partners