FAN FOCUSED: The best kind of contest isn't some random click-here-for-a-chance-to-win deal, nor is it something where anyone who comes across the contest can throw their hat in the ring. (Do you throw your hat in the ring with contests? Bear with us.) Rather, the juiciest contest is one that rewards true fans of a place or product. Example? Boutique bed-and-breakfast outfit Four Sisters Inns is holding a Time Away Photo Contest, which is specifically for people who have already stayed at the one of the company's properties. Works, right? The person who wins this will already love the hotels that they're winning a free night at. There's something almost meta at work here.)
THE CONTEST: There's a long lead time on this; April 2, 2012 is the deadline. So plenty of weeks, or months even, to choose that best Four Sisters shot. And figure that, if you do win that free night, you'll be able to use it over next summer. Yes. We are officially thinking about next summer only days after the last one wrapped. Get details and look at the other prizes (cookbooks and such) at the Four Sisters site.