Shoppers keep it local for Small Business Saturday
NEW YORK -- Saturday was a kind of Super Bowl for mom-and-pop shops across the Tri-State Area.
Small Business Saturday lets people prop up the local merchants who keep our communities unique and alive. As CBS2's Dave Carlin reports, shoppers spent the day "keeping it local" by shopping small.
Westwood, New Jersey, is a small town with a quaint and thriving business district.
Heidi Skelton, owner of Threads, discounted everything 20% for this day set aside to celebrate and support small business owners.
"We have relationships with all our customers, so they're our friends, we watched their kids grow up, so when people come in, we're, like, excited to see them," she said.
"I do like the big stores, but this is my favorite small store," shopper Sheryl Magnuson said. "You gotta support the local people. They have to survive."
Kimberly Alutto opened Westwood Candy Company and Gift Shop just over a year ago.
"It's tough being a small business, but it's so much fun and it's so rewarding," she said. "We're more than just a business. We're part of the community. That's really what I strive to be, so it's always nice to have your community come back out and support you, and luckily Westwood has been amazing since I've been in business."
Music Merchant, on Westwood Avenue, has been open since 1979.
"We sell a lot of stuff, and then we have Record Store Day, which was yesterday," owner John Schlapak said.
The hot seller is always vinyl, especially Christmas records.
"We have this whole thing where we give Christmas albums to each other as kind of a fun gesture," shopper Heather Whitney said.
These stores do not have the huge workforce or massive warehouse space, and although they may be little, they are mighty and deserve a lot of love.
Experts say two-thirds of every dollar spent at a local business stays in the community.
In Brooklyn, the day served as a kick-off for Bedford-Stuyvesant's "Winter Wonderland" event. It's a holiday shopping experience outside, featuring local crafters, creatives and small businesses.
"It's important because small businesses support the community. It's a way for us to have our own, to have generational wealth to keep everything in our community," said Keeshagaye Whitter, founder of My Emollient personal care line.
The pop-up holiday marketplace is open Thursday, Fridays and Saturdays through Dec. 23.