A sense of place and support

Published 4:53 pm Tuesday, November 21, 2017

The turkey is in the refrigerator. The dinner menu has been planned. The decorations are out for this annual day of giving thanks.

Looming over this day of family, friends, food and gratitude is the biggest shopping day of the year: Black Friday. It seems as though over the past decade, the moment Thanksgiving plates are cleared from the table, attention turns immediately to Christmas — or, rather, shopping for Christmas. One holiday has encroached upon the other, and for many, shopping has become a part of the Thanksgiving tradition.

But now it seems as though that’s no longer enough: in an effort to get a jump on other retailers, many stores and websites are holding “pre-Black Friday” sales. In effect, Thanksgiving is being subsumed by the Christmas frenzy.

Just on the heels of Black Friday — a holiday known for its 2 a.m. lines and altercations over limited sale items — is another, more laudable, day. It’s Small Business Saturday. It’s the day in which people are encouraged to not pack up and head to the nearest largest town and its large retail chains, but to stay right here at home and shop at a local store and support the local economy.

Here, besides charm and history and the waterways that run alongside many of Beaufort County’s town, small businesses are what define a place. Buying a souvenir, purchasing new garb, going antiquing, grabbing a bite to eat or having a glass of wine with friends make any visit to town memorable, but it also does so much more. Those actions support Beaufort County’s own — small business owners who, in turn, continue to support others in the community by spending the money they earn here, here.

There’s a saying that regularly circulates on social media: “When you buy from a small business, you’re not helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You’re helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team jersey, a mom put food on the table, a dad pay a mortgage or a student pay for college.”

These are neighbors. They’re friends and family, or perhaps they’re strangers who share a zip code, but this Saturday after Black Friday, consider doing exactly that. Shop local.