Look, we’ve all done it, it’s just too damn convenient. Go to Amazon, find what you want, click and it’s at your door in a day or two. But all too often, the clothes you ordered don’t fit, or don’t look the same as on your screen — thus the Fed Ex carousel begins…
This holiday shopping season I urge you to stop, smell the roses and go explore the local shopping scene. In the November 21 issue of Cascade Business News, you’ll find a list of Made in Central Oregon products — it’s really just a sample-size list, but you get the idea. Numerous people in Central Oregon are responsible for making hundreds of other fabulous items, it would be impossible to list every single one. Our complete list of Made in Central Oregon is posted on www.cascadebusnews.com, if your company is not there, give us a call and we’ll get you on it.
If you asked my wife, she’d say I hate shopping. Not entirely true, but I admit I’m not fond of looking for blouses at every shop for hours at a time. So, when I do agree to shop with her, I like to throw in a good lunch somewhere, probably a local brew pub. This makes wandering around LuLu’s much more enjoyable for the guys!
I’m very hard to shop for, because if I want something, I usually just go buy it. Not talking Porsches here! So, what do you get for a person who already has what they want or need? Art, beer, coffee, treats, jewelry, things made local that you can’t find online or at Home Depot.
There are some incredible places off the beaten path that you can find unique and made in Central Oregon gifts. The Makers District, North Empire with its’ rising emergence of breweries and local restaurants — of which you can read about in the forthcoming pages of course. Downtown and the Old Mill District also harbor local artists and products made right here. But even if you don’t buy things made in the area, just shopping local keeps money in our community…
Around this holiday weekend, shoppers across the country are getting ready to boost local coffers as part of Small Business Saturday, celebrated this year on November 24. According to an economic impact study by sponsor American Express, an average of two-thirds of every dollar spent at a small business stays in the local community.
Another recent survey, undertaken in conjunction with the National Federation of Small Businesses (NFIB), found nine in ten consumers believe it is more important than ever to support small businesses this holiday season, with almost all who plan to shop on Small Business Saturday saying it inspires them to go to local, independently-owned retailers or restaurants they may not have frequented previously.
Local vendors are getting into the spirit of the initiative, including the third annual “Into the Woods” Holiday Market open from 10am-6pm on Black Friday (November 23) and Saturday, at The Commons on NW Brooks Street in Bend. Some 20 local artisans will be selling mostly hand-made goods, from toffee to jewelry, under one big (warm) tent.
Meanwhile, merchants will be staging a Shop Small in Downtown Bend event also on Saturday November 24 from 10am-4pm. Start your day by stopping by the booth in the middle of the street for a free passport. Shoppers who collect 20 stamps from participating merchants can even enter a raffle to win one of 20 prize baskets.
We all win by keeping dollars in the community, so let’s step up and do our part this holiday season to make a big impact by ditching the mouse and buying local!