To provide entertainment to families amid the coronavirus pandemic, Walmart unveiled a virtual experience and an in-person “contact-free” experience. The events include a virtual camp called Camp by Walmart and a drive-in movie theater experience in conjunction with Tribeca Enterprises that will change the retailer’s parking lots into outdoor movie theaters per an announcement.
Families can use the Walmart app to experience 50 Camp by Walmart activities on a complimentary basis beginning July 8. The activities include a “Skills Camp” talent show that features those with special talents such as Idina Menzel, the actress and singer. In addition, Neil Patrick Harris, the actor and “head camp counselor” has a morning kick-off that puts families in camp challenges such as musical mad libs and “Neil’s Charades.”
Walmart is also changing 160 of its retail location parking lots into drive-in cinemas in which shoppers can safely come together to enjoy movies. The retailer will launch the experience in places throughout the nation for 320 overall screenings. The night will involve top movies, concessions sent straight to the vehicles of shoppers and special celebrity as well as filmmaker appearances.
The retailer is also teaming with Tribeca Drive-In as a “presenting partner” for the Tribeca Drive-In events that kick off Thursday (July 2).
Walmart Chief Customer Officer Janey Whiteside said in the announcement, “Summer hasn’t really felt like summer yet and I know I hear every day, ‘Mom, I’m bored!’” Whiteside continued, “Through our digital means and vast footprint of stores, we’re hoping to bring some summer fun to families across the country. We know Walmart plays a role in our communities that extends far beyond getting them necessary supplies, and we see that now more than ever.”
In separate news, Walmart has teamed with online shopping firm Shopify in an effort to bolster its digital marketplace presence. The retailer will add up to 1,200 Shopify merchants to its marketplace in 2020, with an emphasis on bringing small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to the Walmart.com lineup.