Shoppers flocked to local businesses this weekend for Small Business Saturday, a day that encourages citizens to explore their communities and the goods and services offered by local shops.
Small Business Saturday started in 2010 as a marketing campaign for American Express. In 2011, the day became official when the United States Senate unanimously passed a resolution of support for Small Business Saturday.
“We love Small Business Saturday, because it is the day out of the year where we see our vision alive at its healthiest,” said Main Street Portsmouth’s Executive Director, Joseph Pratt. “Our community doesn’t hesitate to support business this time of the year and it is absolutely wonderful to see so many establishments being appreciated.”
According to data collected by American Express, 95 million people participate in Small Business Saturday and over $14.3 billion is spent each year at small independent businesses on the day.
“We opened at 10 (a.m.) today and we already had people waiting on us,” said Tarrah Bouts. Bouts is the owner of Amelia Gray Skincare & Cosmetics, located in Suite B at 633 7th Street, Portsmouth, Ohio. “Portsmouth is awesome, I say it all the time but we have the best customers. We had two new customers come in for services this morning and they said their goal this year is to shop small (businesses), they were doing all their Christmas shopping locally.”
Many find Small Business Saturday a refreshing alternative to Black Friday, choosing to go against big box stores and enjoying the opportunity to get to know small shops and their owners.
“There is so much to appreciate in downtown Portsmouth, from unique handmade jewelry to antiques,” said Pratt. “We support shopping small, because it means piano lessons for the neighbor’s kid or someone’s lifetime of loving what they do. We have to step up and support local business, and help our community members, by giving them the patronage needed to succeed.”
Reach Ciara Conley at 740-981-6977, Facebook “Ciara Conley - Daily Times,” and Twitter @PDT_Ciara.