Shopping locally helps make region economy strong

We know many people are excited for the Christmas season and some are fired up for the accompanying shopping season which began Friday.

We hope when each of you decides how to spend your hard-earned money, you think locally. There are many wonderful small businesses in our communities and a good holiday shopping season can be key to their survival.

Big chain stores, of course, provide items that smaller shops cannot.

But please consider that when you shop at local merchants, you’re helping put food on the table for a neighbor.

You’re finding items that are unique and memorable.

And you’re helping the local economy stay strong.

Buying from online giants may be convenient, but if you take the time, you’ll see those quaint local shops have wonderful products to recommend them.

And local artists and crafters can provide one-of-a-kind items found nowhere else.

It might take a bit more time to shop that way — and maybe have to ship packages yourself — but keeping local businesses open is important, year round.

You have the power to help local merchants. We hope you keep that in mind this Christmas shopping season and beyond.

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