Shop Small This Holiday Season: Local Communities Count On Small Businesses For A Continuing Dynamic And Diverse Economy | Free press

Small and charming boutique-style boutiques, local breweries, cafes, restaurants, and small local service businesses give Grand Rapids, Minnesota an economic advantage for communities that only have large franchise businesses. When people own, operate and invest in small businesses, the community benefits in many ways.

“Strong communities are built on local investment, equity and passion. Vibrant communities are where people invest and make people-based decisions with the locals in their best interests, ”said Mark Rudolph, president of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce.

“Small businesses have been hit hardest by this COVID-19 pandemic, and they need our support,” said Megan Christianson, executive director of Visit Grand Rapids. Visit Grand Rapids, the Chamber, and Itasca Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) are all members of the Grand Rapids Downtown Business Association and are committed to creating a vibrant downtown. The DBA Board of Directors is made up of professional volunteers who want to see the city center as a welcoming place where people want to do business, shop, dine and enjoy history, art and culture. culture. “We see downtown as the heartbeat of our community, we want it to be a place where people want to come to do business, shop, eat and drink and enjoy art and history,” Christianson.

Small businesses in Grand Rapids are getting creative to keep people safe shopping with them during the holiday season. Businesses use Commend Sold, online websites that offer curbside pickup, delivery, and shipping options. Restructuring of creative businesses was necessary for small businesses to stay in business during the pandemic, and has now become crucial for growth strategies. Small businesses must have pivoted in no time. “Our small businesses are ready to serve customers in any capacity they seek to shop and do business,” Christianson shares.

“When I ask my six year old daughter Goldie: What’s important about Christmas? »She always responds with« family! ”, Explained IEDC President Tamara Lowney. “In our small rural community, our small businesses are family-run. They donate to hockey teams, serve you hot chocolate on freezing days and do whatever they can to cheer us up. It’s up to us to reciprocate. Shop for your family… with your family. Buy local this holiday season! “

Communities benefit when people buy from local small businesses. According to the University of Minnesota Duluth, Center for Economic Development; if each adult made a $ 50 purchase each month at a small local store, $ 5.5 million would remain in the Grand Rapids community. If each business spent $ 500 each month with a local supplier, $ 7 million would stay in the Grand Rapids community. When we buy small and local, our local communities benefit!

This holiday season it is more important than ever that we support our small businesses and local businesses by purchasing gifts for friends and family at these local small businesses. The Grand Rapids area is fortunate to have boutique style boutiques that offer unique gift items, home decor, clothing, jewelry, footwear, home made, recycled, antiques and l ‘art. Another idea for local shopping is to buy the gift of adventure, unique experiences and travel. Buying tickets for an upcoming show, renting outdoor recreation or renting a cabin to enjoy with your family while on vacation to relax and reconnect.

“Buying gift cards and Chamber Bucks ensures that your holiday gift dollars will be spent locally at small businesses,” Rudolph shares. “We defend the interests of companies, so that they can prosper. »Visit Grand Rapids markets and promote the Grand Rapids, MN area to generate positive economic impact through travel and tourism. The mission of the Grand Rapids Downtown Business Association is to strengthen a vibrant downtown that is the heartbeat of the community by fostering a diverse mix of retail, service industry and culture. The Itasca Economic Development Corporation strives to develop the economy of Itasca County through education, research and outreach that creates business opportunities.

The three organizations work together to support a healthy, vibrant and diverse business environment that can all thrive to generate positive economic impact for the community.

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