It has begun! The free wars. Not that giving away smartphones for free (with contract) is a brand new idea, but giving away a phone of this magnitude certainly is a bold move by Verizon. Apparently if you attend the grand opening of at least one Verizon location in Northampton, MA, you'll be eligible to win a basically free HTC Thunderbolt and walk out of the store with it that day. Everyone else in the world who isn't inside the network will have to wait until February 14th for the honor of holding this phone for their very own.
The store in question will be giving away not one, but TWO free phones on February 12th, one of them being the 4G speed HTC ThunderBolt, the other being a complete mystery. Maybe a WebOS phone. Maybe something exciting. They'll also have food and beverages, and their local radio station 93.9 The River will be broadcasting and giving away ski passes. So win a phone or just go skiing. Probably don't bring the phone on your ski trip or it'll get stolen in the locker room.
The location of this particular Verizon is 162 North King St Big Y, Walmart, Staples Plaza, Northampton, MA 01060, and it's already been soft-opened. They're open seven days a week and if you'd like to call them up to confirm the phones they've got or if they reeeally plan on giving a ThunderBolt away early, you can call them up at 413-341-3473. Nate will take care of you.