Chris McKinnon, News 9
OKLAHOMA CITY – Saturday is dubbed "Small Business Saturday." It is part of a nationwide push to get shoppers into locally-owned businesses with deals similar to those on Black Friday. There is one major difference according to store owners in Oklahoma City; the money you spend at their stores actually goes back into your community.
"You're supporting the people that you live with," said Caleb Arter, owner of Blue Seven on May. "You're supporting your neighbors. You're supporting the people you go to church with, the people you go to school with."
Arter and many other small business owners in the area said the money you spend at locally-owned stores goes directly back to the helping the community in more ways than one might think.
"We all live here, we work here, we put our roots down here and we invest here," said Arter. "Every dollar that you spend here at a local business or a local organization allows them to continue to grow."
Allison Bailey runs shopcrawlr.com, which is an online director of locally owned businesses. She agreed with what Arter said about the benefits of shopping at local stores.
"They're so important to our community and these are the store owners that are contributing to your kids' charity events and donating money to local organization so it's really important to support them," said Bailey.
She said before you go to the national chains, check out what local stores have to offer. Many of them can actually cater to the needs of a local clientele.
Arter said the benefits do not stop there. At Blue Seven, he has seen his staff grow over the last five years. He said that trickles down even more for the local communities.
"We've been able to go from probably three or four employees just about five years ago to 15 or 16 employees," explained Arter. "That means that there are 15 or 16 more people that are paying their bills and hopefully able to put their money back into our community too."
Bailey's website pushes shoppers to the businesses in your neighborhood. She said your local shops have great deals, or even better deals that the national chains. She added this weekend is important to think about shopping locally.
"American Express is sponsoring ‘Small Business Saturday,' which is the local version of Black Friday."
You can go to www.shopcrawlr.com for a list of local businesses participating in Small Business Saturday and see what kinds of specials they have going on.