The hullabaloo about “Gray Thursday,” “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” can make even the most accomplished shopper want to pull their hair out. In all the noise and excitement, local businesses can sometimes fade to the background.
In recent years, a national campaign from American Express that started six years ago and is championed by local businesses encourages consumers to “Shop Small” on Saturday and it has gained momentum. The shop small movement is on a mission to keep people shopping at locally owned businesses to boost local economies.
Chris Deal, Duncan Chamber of Commerce president, said he was not a fan of the name “Small Business Saturday” because, even if local businesses are small, their impact on the community is great.
“Really, one of the best ways we can enhance our retail sector in Duncan is to support our local retailers,” Deal said. “Small businesses are not small to a community like this.”
With a plethora of unique shops in Stephens County, there are plenty of options aside from “cookie cutter” products. Not only does purchasing local goods benefit the store and the customer, but according to Deal, the money continues circulating through the community. Each dollar spent in Duncan draws in 68 cents for Duncan.
“They’re the ones who pump money back into our economy,” he said of local businesses. “Sustainability through our community and our community’s well being is really based on these small businesses, but they do things in a big way. It’s so important to keep those dollars circulating in our economy and they provide so many other services that sustain us.”
The money not only changes hands, but the taxes stay in the community where people live.
Main Street Duncan will be treating Saturday shoppers with “‘Donuts and Drinks” during business hours.
For purchases that need to be made online, there’s still a way to give a little bit back to your local community.
Amazon Smile gives 0.5 percent of all eligible purchases to a charity of your choice and several Stephens County non-profits have accounts including the following: The Stephens County Humane Society, The Stephens County Historical Society, Stephens County Crime Stoppers Inc., Youth Services for Stephens County, Stephens County Genealogical Society Inc., Stephens County Christmas Dinner Association, Stephens County 4-H Foundation, United Way of Stephens County Inc., Pathways to A Healthy Stephens County, Oklahoma Home and Community Education Inc, Rock Island 905 Historical Society, and the Duncan Public Schools Foundation.
Another movement which started as a back lash to the main stream commercialism during what was to be a time of thanks is “Giving Tuesday.” The idea is to donate to a non-profit instead of shopping that day.