Published: May 16, 2013 8:48 PM EDT
Updated: May 17, 2013 12:46 AM EDT

FORT MYERS, Fla. - There was some serious mob activity reported Thursday night in Fort Myers. It was the first hit of the newly-formed Fort Myers Cash Mob. Their targets: local businesses. Their goal is to help them thrive.

Dozens gathered outside Clothes Mentor with their Mob Member cards in hand. "I am known as a shopaholic," Phyllis McPherson said. "I've got a couple tops picked out, a pair of pants and a pair of boots. It's got to have bling."

When the door opened, it was mad rush to support the local business. "It used to be the small town mom and pops," Cash Mob Organizer Kathy Kalvan said. "You had your mom and pop grocery store, your mom and pop clothing store and all of that. That's what it used it be. That's the way it still is in a lot of places in Fort Myers. That's what we want to get back to. These places exist. Come on, and let's help them out."

Each month, one locally-owned store is chosen. Mob members agree to three things: spend 10 dollars, meet three new people and have fun. Cash Mob specifically looks for businesses that give back to the community. "It's been a blessing to us and we hope it's been a blessing to others," Pam Shoffler of Clothes Mentor said.

"We certainly encourage the repeat performance so we'll go promote other businesses," Jan Held of Clothes Mentor added.

While mobbers get special discounts, the true bargain comes from knowing their dollars stay here. "With all of the chains and the large stores," Chris Lapudis said, "I used to be a small store owner so I know what it's like to have your community support you. If we can help a store stay in business and do great then I am all for it."

The Cash Mod specifically chose to start in May because the off-season is when businesses need the most help. After each hit, the mobbers meet at another local spot.
Thursday night, Quarterbacks Sports Grill hosted the group and offered discounts.

To join, to go