Celebrate local businesses on Nov. 25

By Rhea Landholm
Center for Rural Affairs

Growing up, I would earn a quarter per chore — a quarter each for washing dishes, dusting, sweeping and more. I pocketed the quarters, hopped on my bike, and rode four blocks to the main thoroughfare in my town of 1,000.

I would peruse toy racks at the pharmacy and hardware store; drool over bulk candy at the grocery store and the flower shop; and peer at notepads in the glass case at the newspaper office. These locally-owned businesses received all of my hard-earned quarters.

At age 8, I didn’t realize I was supporting small businesses or the local economy. I also didn’t think to save my quarters for spending at a big box or department store. I only knew how handy it was to be able to shop in my community.

Main street businesses are an important part of our life in rural America, and Small Business Saturday, on Nov. 25, is the perfect time to celebrate them. Show your support by making purchases, which keep locally-earned dollars in your communities.

In 2015, U.S. small businesses represented 99.7 percent of businesses with paid employees, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. When we shop, eat and have fun at local establishments, we benefit our neighbors.

During this holiday season, and year round, #ShopSmall. Support your community, your friends, and your way of life. When local businesses succeed, we all win.

 

Rhea Landholm may be reached at rheal@cfra.org.

Established in 1973, the Center for Rural Affairs is a private, nonprofit organization, based in Lyons, Neb., working to strengthen small businesses, family farms and ranches, and rural communities through action-oriented programs addressing social, economic and environmental issues.