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How to Shop Local and Support Small Businesses this Holiday … – The Atascadero News

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Posted by | Dec 22, 2022

ATASCADERO — Local businesses are asking Atascadero residents to shop locally this holiday season. 
“When people shop locally for the holidays, they are actually supporting local families, said Matt Garrett, who owns Irish Oaks Mercantile with his wife, Melissa. “They can feel good knowing they are getting a top-quality product, supporting the employment and education of our local youth, and their money stays right here in our community.”
Garrett points out that there is a more direct connection between customer and product when folks shop locally. 
“We only feature products in our store from local, SLO County farmers and producers. When people shop at our store, they get to speak with the person that makes the products and learn the process.”
Josh Cross, Atascadero Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, observes that when money goes to local businesses, it has a greater impact in the community. 
“Shopping locally is one of the best gifts you can give to your community. Your purchases at local establishments support local families running the businesses and the employees working at them. Families will use that money to frequent other Atascadero shops and restaurants that, in turn, support their own families. It creates a beautiful cycle of giving during the holiday season.”
Research by the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies demonstrates the benefit to the local economy that comes from shopping locally “$68 for every $100 spent at a locally owned business stays in the community. When spending the same at a non-local business like a national chain, only $43 stays in your community.”
Attracting local customers is key for Hope Chest Emporium. November and December are typically the biggest grossing months. Owner Karen McNamara shared, 
“We carry a huge variety of unique gifts from freshly-made to antiques, including toys, tools, dishes, and Waterford goblets. We have 3,000 square feet of cool stuff, plus 500 square feet outside filled with garden accessories, furniture, and practical things for décor.” 
McNamara is celebrating seven years at this location. When customers shop for the holidays, she’s hoping they’ll discover that they can come back for the things they need day-to-day. “We have everything you need for home, garden, gifts and life.”
For a full listing of Chamber member businesses, visit atascaderochamber.org.
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