Many Utah residents have already wrapped up their Black Friday shopping today. But for those who are still on the hunt for holiday gifts, Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams is making a call to shift some of that spending to locally-owned businesses.
At The Old Flamingo, an art boutique in Millcreek, McAdams joined shop owner Shauna Barrett and Nan Seymour with the non-profit organization Local First Utah to stress the benefits of shopping at neighborhood stores like these.
“Not only the benefits that our local shop owners and neighbors will see, but some of the benefits of shopping local means that that keeps dollars in our local economy that come back to benefit all of us,” McAdams said.
The Old Flamingo owner and artist Shauna Barrett said she’s not competing for consumer attention with gimmicks and discounts, but with high quality, unique goods and “Just the friendly atmosphere that they get, the one on attention that they get, knowing that they’re doing something wise for the environment,” Barrett said. “So for us, it’s not more luring, it’s more just being a welcoming face.”
That’s partially what brought Caleb Caple and his family down to The Children’s Hour on 9th and 9th. Although he notes his family shops locally, online and at larger retailers during the holidays.
“You can do the local stores first and maybe a couple weeks later, couple of days later beat the rush, so it’s nice to come to these local stores and not have to deal with all of the craziness and fights and people getting run over,” Caple said.
Mayor Ben McAdams said four times as much money stays in the community when spent locally than when spent at national stores. According to Local First Utah, if all Utah households shifted 10 percent of their spending to local businesses, an additional $1.3 billion would stay in the Utah economy.