BY LEANN DILBECK –
The Mena/Polk County Chamber of Commerce is joining with area retailers in hosting a Holiday Shopping Season Kick-Off to be held this Saturday, November 16. While retailers traditionally compete for customers’ dollars, area retailers are willing to join forces to make a big statement about remembering to support the local community and shop local first.
The benefits of shopping local are well documented. Among the top are the tax revenue and jobs that are provided. With many rural communities struggling to compete with the growing metropolitan areas, the need for supporting local businesses has never been greater. Mom and Pop operations are continually fighting to stay alive in a challenging economy, especially next to the large box/chain stores who have big buying power and big advertising dollars to spend to reach consumers.
Another advantage in shopping local is the customer service provided. Many times, the store owner is familiar with whom you may be shopping for for the holiday season and can make personalized suggestions to select that perfect gift.
Many participants in this year’s event will be joining together to offer progressive lunches and most have planned sales and promotions. Look for a special section and on-line advertisements from participants here and in this week’s Polk County Pulse!