Guest Post by Dee Slinde
As the chill of winter settles on Lanesboro, we are reminded of the upcoming Holiday Season, and all of the joy and giving of thanks that goes with it. It is usually considered to be a time of family, friends, remembrance and appreciation. Over the years I’ve noticed each holiday becoming more commercialized, often to the detriment of the true meaning of the holiday. Shopping for holiday gifts on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday has become an artform, a competition and a controversy as big box retailers compete for consumer dollars, and consumers compete with each other to find the cheapest deals.
Over the past few years, as a counter to the massive consumerism that has brought us what some have referred to as the “Happythanksween” season, there has been a movement to encourage shoppers to be more thoughtful in the spending of their holiday dollars. We are encouraging folks to ‘Shop Small’ on Small Business Saturday, November 29th, 2014. The effects of this are twofold: it allows families to focus on their traditions of being able to gather together to give thanks on the actual Thanksgiving holiday, and it encourages people to shop at the locally owned and operated stores to keep our local community’s economy thriving.
The dollars spent at our local stores and restaurants directly affects not only our neighbors that own the businesses, but also many other businesses and ourselves when those dollars recirculate throughout the community. For example, the purchase I make at a local merchant’s business may be used to pay the wages of the business’s staff, who will then spend it on food, housing, utilities and so forth in our community. Some of my purchase goes to pay the taxes and utilities of the business, which helps the City to provide the services we enjoy, such as plowed streets, beautiful parks, and quality schools. Some of my purchase might be used to pay a local plumber or carpenter for a remodeling project at the business. Perhaps the carpenter likes the community and may decide to build a new home in the area that will add to our local tax base, and in a roundabout way, helps to keep my taxes lower in the process. Pretty profound, when you think about it.
Many studies have been done to track the value of a dollar that is spent in the local economy, and most studies indicate that for every dollar we spend locally, it will recirculate through the local economy an average of 7-8 times…in other words, the dollar you spend locally compounds by 700-800%…if only my stocks would produce such a return! The simple act of shopping at a small/local business has far reaching effects.
Lanesboro will be hosting Winter Windows Live on Small Business Saturday, November 29, 2014. Being in a community that is filled with nothing but small, independent businesses, we invite you to shop thoughtfully/Shop Small!
Schedule of Events
10:00 am: Free kids movie at the St. Mane Theater (Muppet Christmas Carol/sponsored by Lanesboro Arts, Pedal Pushers Cafe, Merchants Bank and Lanesboro Web Management Group.)
11:30 am: Winter Windows Live (free events) = artist Leisa Louis Grill at Lanesboro Arts, musician Tom Schramm at Amish Experience, scenes from “A Christmas Carol” at E2 Boutique, lefse-making at Pedal Pushers Cafe, Ekstrom Family Christmas at Beste Byen, Santa’s Workshop at the Cottage House Inn, Heart Strings Harp Circle concert at Coffee Street Fitness, Christmas games at Stone Mill Inn, and a Christmas sing-along at the Commonweal Theatre!
1:30 pm: The Commonweal Theatre presents “Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!)” Families and kids welcome, tickets available in advance or at the box office 507-467-2525.