The Union Recorder

November 30, 2013

EDITORIAL: Shopping small pays big

The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE — The Friday after Thanksgiving might be the busiest retail shopping day of the year, but this weekend presents an opportunity to spread the love at the local level by supporting small businesses and independent stores.

For the past few years, many of us nationwide have shopped small the Saturday after Thanksgiving, promoting small businesses owners in communities like Milledgeville and others across the country.

This Saturday is Small Business Saturday, a concept started back in 2010 in an effort to encourage shoppers to spread the love — and the dollars — during the holiday shopping season.

According to the Small Business Association, around 70 million people shopped at small businesses last year, spending an estimated $5.5 billion. This year, projections from the National Retail Federal are that more than 140 million Americans will shop during this extended Thanksgiving holiday weekend, so why not send some of those dollars through the local pipeline?

As shopping continues throughout this season, let’s not get so caught up in the big box store bargains that we forget about the smaller stores that help pump life into the local economy.

And it’s not just retail stores. It’s pharmacies, banks, florists, boutiques and bike shops and so much more, the businesses run and operated by people you’ve come to know and are regulars in Baldwin County and the surrounding areas.

Advocacy, public and private organizations nationwide, including the local Chamber of Commerce among others, are supporting the effort to raise awareness about these businesses’ importance to local communities.

There is a need to laud the impact of local businesses and their value to the Baldwin County community.

Now that Gray Thursday and Black Friday are done and before Cyber Monday kicks off, support the local businesses that support this community because as they rise to success, so too, does Baldwin County — not just this weekend but all year long.

Shopping small spreads big dividends for Baldwin County.

So shop small and spread the love to those who love the local community — this weekend and all year-round.