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Local Shops in the Spotlight on Small Business Saturday

By: Jessica Cunnington Email
By: Jessica Cunnington Email

November 24, 2012

Holiday shopping deals are earlier and the lines are longer than ever. That's why some people held out for Small Business Saturday.

"You can be in Barracks Road for an hour and a half looking for parking. Why bother? I hate Black Friday, I avoid it like the plague," said Crozet resident Clover Carroll.

"I love shopping on the Downtown Mall where I'm outside and it's unique shops that have incredibly beautiful gifts," she said.

And especially after an election so focused on the economy and small businesses, shop owners urge consumers to remember then on Small Business Saturday.

"Slow down for a moment and look back at our local economy. Look at where we can choose to shop locally in Charlottesville and support these businesses," said Derriere de Soire employee Kelly Douma.

"You don't want to do what the big people do. You don't want to bother people and throw information in their face, to say 'Hey, wait a second, remember us? We're over here, you come here all the time so here's a deal for you,'" said Laurel Thompson, the assistant manager at Hip Joint.

Whether Small Business Saturday is when you do all of your shopping or just some of it, store owners say it's important to always keep local in the mix.

"There's a lot of competition, which is good, and people have so many choices that we want them to remember us on the mall and that we have wonderful merchandise for them."

And some people say it's the kind of merchandise that is unique and perfect for that special gift.

"I have very specific things I want to get for people, and when I see it, I say, 'Oh my God, they won't have this anywhere else so I have to buy it here.' And then the person will say, 'Wow where did you get this,'" Thompson said.

In between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, people still got bundled up and walked along the holiday decorated downtown mall to check off gift items they might not be able to find in the big box stores.

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