$100 Bills Have Been Hidden All Over Oregon's Capital

You can thank 'Benny'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 15, 2016 8:29 AM CDT
$100 Bills Have Been Hidden All Over Oregon's Capital
More than $50,000 has been found so far.   (AP Photo/Jon Elswick, File)

Oregon's capital is rolling in Benjamins thanks to a generous yet mysterious "Benny-factor." The Statesman Journal reports $100 bills began appearing around Salem in May 2013 and more than $50,000 has been discovered since, including $8,600 last month alone. The individual responsible—nicknamed "Benny" after Benjamin Franklin, who graces the bill—has yet to be revealed, though he has left the trademark folded bills, signed "Benny" on the right edge, in 26 different stores and several neighborhoods and at eight events. Some 156 bills have been found at a single grocery store and 65 at a Walmart, hidden in boxes of cereal, feminine hygiene products, diapers, and toilet paper, per the Journal. But the bills have also been found in strollers, stuffed into tip jars, and slipped through open car windows, reports CBS 8.

The best part? They have a way of finding those who need help affording rent or medication. A homeless couple even used a bill to spend a few nights in a motel. And about 50% of so-called Benny-ficiaries report paying it forward. These include children who've bought school supplies for classmates, groceries for a food bank, and toys for charity. A market vendor who found 10 bills, the most of anyone, says she's donated each one to a non-profit; other Benny-ficiaries have donated the $100 plus $100 of their own money. Others are actually keeping the Benny bills and donating their own funds. "People are posting them on refrigerators, displaying them on bedside tables, carrying them in their purses, and putting them in protective sleeves," Capi Lynn writes at the Journal. "It's a reminder, they say, to give and be like Benny." (Cash has also been found across California.)

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