Winona playfully responds to Winona Ryder's Super Bowl ad

An aerial photo of Winona, Minn.
Tourism officials in Winona have created their own tongue-in-cheek website in response to Winona Ryder's web page, created as part of Squarespace's Super Bowl ad. It's called WelcomeToTheRestOfWinona.com.
Cynthya Porter | Courtesy of Visit Winona

You saw Winona Ryder's Winona. Now see the rest of it.

Tourism officials in the southeastern Minnesota city have created their own tongue-in-cheek website in response to the "Stranger Things" star's web page, which was unveiled earlier this week as part of Squarespace's Super Bowl ad.

In the spot, the Oscar-nominated actress reveals she's building a website — WelcomeToWinona.com — about her birthplace, featuring photos of people and places from throughout the city. The images will be featured in an autographed limited edition photo book that goes on sale Monday, with proceeds going to the American Indian College Fund.

"While the value of being spotlighted to an international audience is beyond compare for Winona’s tourism and relocation initiatives, many of the photos in the collection feature a gritty, artistic viewpoint rather than the city’s beautiful landmarks and other attributes," said a statement from Visit Winona. "As art, it is a compelling display. As a marketing tool, not so much."

So they turned to Squarespace — yes, they did — to build their own website. It's called WelcomeToTheRestOfWinona.com.

Visitors might notice it looks a little familiar. That's because the site is designed to look almost exactly like Ryder's.

"We thought it would be a fun playful take really leveraging the campaign that's out there right now. It's the largest exposure that we could ever hope to get," said Visit Winona executive director Pat Mutter.

In a statement, Visit Winona leaders made it clear that they love Winona Ryder and that she is “beloved” in town.

Visit Winona is also making its own photo book, inviting people to post their best "true Winona" shots using the hashtag #WelcomeToWinona. The book, which will be published in late February, will feature some of those photos.

Profits from book sales will be donated to local initiatives, the tourism organization said.

MPR News reporter Catharine Richert contributed to this report.

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