The holiday season is officially upon us!
The crowds at the mall and the chaos of Black Friday inspire me to make a quiet pledge to stick to the locally owned, small businesses this time of year. Celebrate Durham makes shopping locally around the holidays easier every year. Durham businesses are participating in Small Business Saturday again this year and shoppers will have a chance to win $500 worth of gift certificates! I recently wrote about Shop L8 Fridays, another initiative to make it easier for locals to keep their dollars here. You'll also have a chance to shop local vendors at the Community Church of Durham's annual Christmas Fair on Saturday, December 1st.
I am sure we'll cover all of these events (and more) here on the blog, but before we do, I wanted to make sure we wrote about why this is so important.
I recently went to a conference about the power of the local economy and what I took away was this great infographic.
So, why should we care about shopping locally? Local, small businesses are linked to higher incomes and less income inequality. One study found that counties with larger shares of locally-owned, small businesses outperform their peers on three critical economic indicators. Entrepreneurship fuels job creation, too; new businesses account for nearly all net new job creation. Independent businesses generate more tax revenue at a lower public cost, too. It probably won't surprise you to hear that community scaled businesses are better for the environment, as well. This one checks out with me; I can walk to the dozen locally owned, small businesses in downtown Durham and save myself (and my car) from making the drive to the malls.
My favorite reason to shop locally: local businesses foster community cohesion and well-being. This is true among the business community in Durham.
This holiday season, visit Durham's businesses and shop local! Visit our Business Directory to find all of Durham's businesses.
Thanks to the Institute for Self Reliance for this great infographic. Find the entire guide Local Policy Matters: How to Grow Independent Businesses in Your City here.