The power shopping local can have in a community has been studied, written about and campaigned for many times in the last few years. Small Business Saturday is a direct result of many of those efforts made on a national level.
The Charlotte business community is prepared to the demonstrate the impact local businesses working together can have on the shopping experiences those who choose to shop local can enjoy. More than 30 local businesses have come together — under the leadership of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, CharlotteRising, and Love4Charlotte Businesses — to create a full day of activities for Small Business Saturday, Nov. 25 in downtown Charlotte.
“It’s been exciting to see the many different business owners getting together the last several months to plan one event for the betterment of the entire community,” said Charlotte Chamber of Commerce director Courtney Anderson. “I feel that everyone is really excited to be a part of it this year.”
The Chamber of Commerce has combined its annual Holiday Parade and tree lighting ceremony — traditionally held the Monday before Thanksgiving — to the Small Business Saturday activities this year. Anderson said the hope is that providing added community activities will further entice families to come downtown to “shop local.”
“Buying local makes a difference in the success of independent businesses with keeping over 50 percent of the money in the community,” said Kellie Hanford of the Small Business Development Center at Lansing Community College. Hanford was instrumental in establishing the online group Love4Charlotte Businesses.
Small Business Saturday activities get underway at 10 a.m. and will be capped off by the Holiday parade at 6 p.m. In addition to the traditional businesses, pop-up shops will be featured downtown. Families can enjoy cider and donuts, have their picture taken with Santa Claus, The Grinch, and Elvis.
“Strong small businesses help to grow a strong community, and in return, a strong community will grow a strong future,” Anderson said.
Participating businesses include Eaton Theatre, Cut-N-Tease Salon, Bella Grande, Custom Home Interiors, B’s Floral, Charlotte Shoe Repair, Hen House Quilt Shop, The Gaming Cantina, Oh Darling! Children’s Upscale Resale, Cochran’s RCs and More, Yarn Garden, Creatively MI, The Hall, Windwalker Underground Gallery, Jewetts Carpet, CharlotteRising, Eaton Clothing and Furniture, Skidmore’s Village Cycle Shop, The Groomery, Green Tree Essentialz, Gypsy Market, Carl V. Reck Jewelers, Crosswalk Teen Center, First Congregational Church, and restaurants Riedy’s Tavern, Cottage Inn Pizza, Mike’s Sports Page, Sidestreets Deli, Eaton Place, Eaton Pub & Grille, Rubber Biscuit, Fay’s Evelyn Bay Coffee, and The Dolson.