what a wonderful campaign. not a new concept, its been around for a while. the idea is to support small local business. you try to spend $50 locally, every 30 days. you know. mom & pop shops. local restaurants, local farmer stands.
and if we all did it.. we'd have all this money back into local economy. i love it! it just makes sense.
and of course, i would much rather spend money with the "little guy" struggling to make a living, especially in this economy.
Sometimes its hard. other times its easy. Mainly the hard part is the outrageous prices the little guy charges. I know. he has overhead. he has to buy the product for way more than the big box store charges, often he has to buy from the big box store to re sell, since his small orders don't even qualify for delivery.
So on the way home today, i passed Wal Mart.. knowing their milk is only $1.99.
And i stopped a new produce store that just opened last year. A 3rd generation farmer who put up a cute little building with wrap around porch. Grows his own corn and tomatoes, but also buys "excess" from local gardeners, which is another nice thing i like about him.
The porch itself attracts customer. It has a row of hand made Adrondiak chairs, hand made by a local retired carpenter. For sale of course. Jim, the produce stand owner doesn't take a cut.. you just make your check out to the carpenter. Jim's nice like that. For his kindness, his business should thrive.
He helped me pick out a watermelon, and sold me a quart box of tomatoes, half green for frying. His prices barely more than Wal Mart..but i know he didn't use nasty pesticides or anything bad in growing them.
Just down the road a bit after Jim's produce stand and right before my house is a "corner store"..little gas station with two pumps and a small convenience store. Its been there for ages, though its on about the third owner. I have to mention its in the middle of no where. 7 miles from "town."
You never see a car there. its sad. The convenience of having him open, despite high prices is worth supporting him. Hey, you can't run up to walmart in your pajamas at 9:30pm cause you forgot you don't have coffee for the morning or bread for the kids lunches. But you can there. And he doesn't even laugh, although i'm sure he wonders about some of his customers.
So I stopped in and grabbed a gallon of milk. $3.99. but that's ok. it was worth the extra $2 to not deal with a parking spot at walmart, the long lines at the checkout. And he greeted me by name, asked about the kids as he handed me my change. You don't get that at big box stores.
We haven't spent anywhere near $50 so far this month.. but we'll hit the little restaurant for breakfast Saturday morning, and keep trying to "keep it local".
its a nice feeling.