Local merchants hope you'll buy local for the holidays
Reporter: Craig Smith
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The big national chains rule Black Friday. But Saturday, local stores work to bring shoppers in to their special day.
They call it Shop Local Saturday.
On Tucson's 4th Avenue, Antigone Books had a good crowd despite Big Box, Black Friday enticements.
Shoppers there say local stores have unique enticements of their own.
Cassandra Wensel-Kanne says, "We have family in town and we wanted to show them what Tucson is really like and you don't go to a mall to do that because that's just like every other city they've ever been to."
Antigone Books owner Trudy Mills says local merchants can find ways to compete with the big national chains.
KGUN9 reporter Craig Smith asked her: "People are so keen to find the best deal, the cheapest price now, how do local stores compete with that?
Trudy Mills: "We do also compete, sometimes on price more than people think but also just, I think, customer service and things like that. We gift wrap for free for everybody. We go the extra mile to find the stuff they need."
Yikes Toys on Broadway sells toys that are hip and quirky, and traditional toys you rarely see these days.
Shopper Jenniffer Funk-Weyant says"Toys for kids, definitely you can shop local. Kitschy things like here at Yikes you can find and really unique, fun toys and items. Then I'd say electronics obviously you're gonna find at more of a big box store.
"Feeding the local economy is a big part of the buy local sales pitch. The idea is if you spend at local stores more of the money stays in the local economy and more tax dollars stay local too."
Then there's a quality that defies a firm price tag. Yikes owner Patricia Katchur thinks keeping local stores alive keep a town's unique culture alive.
She says, "If every town you go to is a big box store that you see in every other store, why travel?"
For a website devoted to special promotions for local merchants in Tucson and elsewhere in Arizona, visit Local First Arizona