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    Spot on

    New App Contains Vital Information on Where To Go and What To Do in Montgomery

    Summer 2015
    By David Zaslawsky
    Photography by Robert Fouts

    While promoting a 2015 calendar, Taujuanna Ware came across a family visiting Montgomery for the inaugural Raycom Media Camellia Bowl.

    The family asked Ware what visitors to a new city frequently want to know: What to do and where to go? They asked her to recommend a restaurant. She escorted them to Chris’ Hot Dogs, a Montgomery institution and one of the vendors in her 2015 calendar. The family enjoyed their meal and experience at Chris’ and were thankful for the inside information on where to eat. “They are more prone to listen to someone local,” Ware said.

    Now think about having information about what to do, where to go, where to eat at your fingertips – an app away. That app is called Hot Spots and is being launched by business partners Ware and Josh Bush. A marketing campaign for the downloadable app was scheduled for the city’s Second Saturday event in June.

    Bush, CEO and president of the information technology company Up and Running, said, “Right now, my wife and I sit around and try to figure out which restaurant to go to.” Getting information to people on where to go and what to do became a class project while he was in Leadership Montgomery. There should be an app or something that lets people know, “what is there to do this weekend in all genres,” he said. “All of these things are going on, but you have to go to different sources to get information. We’re trying to bring it to one central spot.”

    It will be a learning experience for Bush and Ware, who is executive director of Xquisite, LLC. Ware, who is experienced in marketing/promotions, came to Bush wanting to build this app. Bush said he had a similar idea.

    Hot Spots will inform users not only what events are going on, but where the cool places are – the unique things. Users will learn where the locals go to eat and shop. The new app, which is free, is for both visitors and locals. There will be information about places; photos that show restaurants’ interior; and a menu option. The app will enable the user to even make dinner reservations in the future.

    “It’s not just going to be restaurants,” Bush said about Hot Spots. “It’s going to have different categories: the arts, events, sports, entertainment.”

    There will also be a website. Businesses will input their information, which will be instantly loaded to the app, Bush said. Businesses that pay a fee will be highlighted on the splash pages and app. The goal is 200 vendors, Ware said.

    To promote the app and website, Ware and Bush said they will advertise on social media, including YouTube.

    Montgomery is just the opening act for Hot Spots. The goal, according to Bush, is a national app and hopefully global. “I just landed in Seattle and I want to know what’s going on,” Bush said. “I want to catch a play. Where is that?”

    Now, Chris’ Hot Dogs “could be on par with the big boys and actually listed as a place to go” on the new app, Bush said.