Winter came early to the Village by the Sea this year.
Residents strolling Langley’s streets Friday morning were greeted with the sight of a dusting of snow – but only in front of Fair Trade Outfitters and Good Cheer Thrift Store on Anthes Avenue.
Cameras were rolling as a production crew filmed a Toyota commercial. The thrift store was transformed into a makeshift post office, complete with the quintessential blue mailbox, holiday decorations and plenty of fake snow.
Jaime Blomquist, a cashier at the Langley Good Cheer Thrift Store, had the chance to meet the actress who starred alongside a 2024 model of a Toyota pickup truck in the commercial. Employees of the shop watched the wintry scene unfold from inside the building. Blomquist estimated that around 300 people were part of the crew.
“We just can’t wait to see the finished product,” she said.
Blomquist was told that the commercial would air during Super Bowl LVIII in 2024, although others have heard it might be sooner.
Lilly van Gerbig, owner of Fair Trade Outfitters, said a location scout visited Langley about a week ago and came by her business. She had no idea the commercial was going to be a winter scene or involve snow.
By noon on Friday, all of the snow – which Blomquist said was really shredded paper – was cleaned up. Despite the staged cold snap, that day was sunny and warm, and temperatures reached the 70s in the seaside village.
According to Blomquist, the production crew is also considering Ebey’s Landing as a location for another snowy commercial.
Langley Mayor Scott Chaplin said the city received some revenue via the commercial from a filing permit fee of $431. City staff were also compensated for their time spent closing down the streets.
“We have had several complaints from local businesses that they didn’t know it was going to happen, and it did cause some delivery truck delays,” Chaplin said. “The city had put several large signs in the street up early this week letting people know it would happen, and there was some door-to-door notifications, but obviously not enough.”