Going Local

Fill Your Bag With Hometown Goods

"When you buy from a small business ...," said the hand-written note on a sidewalk chalkboard in the photo making the rounds on Facebook recently,"... You're helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy gets his team jersey, moms and dads put food on the table. Shop local."

Small Business Saturday is November 25. It's a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their communities. Small Business Saturday is dedicated to supporting the diverse range of local independent businesses that create jobs, help boost the economy, and enhance neighborhoods around the country.

What started as a marketing promotion by American Express to get holiday shoppers in the doors of small businesses on the Saturday after Thanksgiving in 2010 has evolved into the “Shop Small" movement. Shop Small celebrates small businesses, ranging from retail stores and restaurants to fitness studios, and everything in between.

In Indiana, there are over a half million small businesses, says the U.S. Small Business Administration, co-sponsor of the day. That's over 99% of the state's total number of businesses. In addition, Indiana's small businesses employ 1.2 million people, about 44% of Indiana's employees.

Created in 1953, the U.S. Small Business Administration helps small business owners and entrepreneurs pursue the American dream. SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital, and contracting expertise as the nation's only go-to resource and voice for small businesses.

"Our member cooperatives are invested in local communities by nature," said John Cassady, CEO of Indiana's Electric Cooperative Association." Supporting local business helps the communities where our members live and serve."

To learn more, visit the Shop Small website.