We recently had a restaurant close on our main street. A beloved restaurant. These folks made the MOST fabulous food, and while we're all of course happy for the owners' new adventures, man - was the town sad. Customers flocked in to have a last meal there, it was on the radio, all over social media, this was a loss for the community and kinda felt like saying goodbye to a friend.
It also made me realize once again how important businesses are to each other, and that we survive and thrive on main street through cooperation and collaboration. I happen to live in the town my business is in, and definitely support my local shops and restaurants on the regular. But this year, I'm making it my mission to shop small businesses Every. Single. Time. this holiday season. We're all busy around the holidays and as a mom and business owner, those Prime deliveries get really tempting. So, I'm starting early this year. Ha, not THIS early, mind you. But before my usual December 15th panic mode.
So, shopping local is super important to me, but why should it be important to you?
The folks at SCORE made some really great little graphics that show a few of the benefits small businesses bring to the community.
Those dollars you spend locally STAY local!
Ok, I can 100% attest to this as TRUTH. Lots of our goods are made locally! We also support non-product businesses by holding classes led by local instructors. We bank locally, have our printing done locally and when we have a party...those treats are all purchased locally!
Small businesses keep communities CONNECTED!
Small businesses sponsor little league teams, they donate baskets and gift certificates to tricky trays and PTO fundraisers. Sure, we're here if you need a last minute gift, but also if you need to see a friendly face on your stroll in the downtown. My customers & neighbors know (I hope they do anyway!) that they can stop in anytime for a chat or a lolli for their little one. Owning a small business in my hometown has made me feel more invested in and connected to my community.
So, I'll step down from my locally made soapbox for the moment, but plan to share my progress on social media if you care to follow along. What I can find in my town, what I can't and how to keep this holiday season local, eco-friendly and hopefully stress free!