Okay, so the holidays are here…and even though it’s a tough economy, a lot of us will still be out shopping for presents for our friends and loved ones. So let me ask you: Are you tired of the same old driving to a “big box” store, and getting the same old stuff everybody else is getting? Would you like to do something this holiday season to help locally-owned, independent business right here in our community? If so, why not do your holiday shopping at those local, independent businesses?
The website downtowngrid.com is a good way to find local businesses that might have what you want. Just take a look around! Midtown, of course, has lots of small businesses, boutiques, bookstores, and yummy restaurants (for gift certificates for that food-lover on your list!). The 16th and Broadway area: Music stores, a bookstore, a movie theater, and even more restaurants. And there are lots of other cool or interesting places to shop around town, where you’re treated like a real person; you can keep going back and get to know the people you’re buying from; you’re not asked to sign up for a credit card or pay to get into a “club”; and–best of all–your money stays here in the community.
For enhancing the outdoor shopping experience, check out the lovely (temporary, of course) outdoor skating rink on 20th Street next to J Street. It could be fun for you and your friends and family to share…and then, nearby, you can pop in for coffee or food, or browse for magazines or clothes…or take a stroll down the streets and see what’s waiting for you. And that’s just one possibility…
And oh, yes, there are a few stores and restaurants right here in the Newton Booth neighborhood, too (or just nearby). The Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op has lots of gift ideas (fresh-ground coffee from the Co-op is one of my favorite gifts, but you will undoubtedly find others). And if you live here in the neighborhood, you may not even have to drive…save yourself the hassle of finding a parking space in some overcrowded mall parking lot, give yourself a little exercise, and walk to your shopping destination!
Think of it–without local customers like you, some of these little stores and restaurants…well, just might not make it in these tough times. Then you’d *have* to go to a big box store…and that would be kind of a shame, wouldn’t it? Try shopping local…because the real gift is a vibrant community.