Local shops welcoming customers on Small Business Saturday

Published 12:11 am Thursday, November 28, 2013

NATCHEZ — Small businesses in Natchez are putting out the welcome mat Saturday hoping discounts and sales will convince residents to shop local.

Small Business Saturday is an annual event hosted by merchants across the country on the Saturday after Thanksgiving aimed to boost the economy and preserve neighborhoods.

Natchez Chamber of Commerce President Debbie Hudson said the event is especially important for a city such as Natchez, which thrives off tax revenue generated from local sales.

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“We always want to try and get people to see if the things they might normally go out of town to buy are available right here in Natchez,” Hudson said. “If you don’t look at the things offered in our backyard, then you might never know they’re here.

“We have a lot of great treasures in Natchez that other places don’t have.”

Hudson said this year  Abby Brown, who is chamber executive assistant, and Callie Godfrey, who is assistant manager at Dianne’s Frame Shop & Gifts, worked to organize the event.

Godfrey said she signed up for an offer on Facebook posted by the national Small Business Saturday page that offered a select number of businesses the chance to receive promotional materials to help attract customers.

“They picked Dianne’s Frame Shop, so we started receiving all this cool shop small stuff, but it was so much and we couldn’t use it all,” Godfrey said. “I talked to Abby (Brown) and got some contact information for other chamber members to see if anybody else wanted to be involved.”

Eleven Natchez businesses responded to Godfrey’s request and agreed to offer sale incentives on items throughout Saturday.

“Most of the businesses are offering 20 percent off or some kind of discount to try and get people in the door,” Godfrey said. “I got about 400 reusable shop small bags, so the plan is the first 20 customers that come into those stores get a reusable bag.

“I also got some signs and car magnets that I gave out pretty quickly.”

Stores participating in Small Business Saturday include:

• Double C Ranch Western Store

• Slick Rick’s Foods

• A Gallerie

• Pampered Sole

• Rolling River Roasters

• Sun, Moon & Stars

• Uniquely Yours

• Darby’s

• Jack + Stella, A Children’s Boutique

• The Flower Station

• Katie’s Ladies Apparel

• Dianne’s Frame Shop & Gifts

Godfrey said she hopes the event will allow shoppers to see the wide selection of products and businesses offered in the area.

“A lot of people automatically go to the big box stores or go out of town, but there are more unique things that those places can’t offer that you can find here,” she said. “Hopefully, it’ll be a good day.”

For more information about the event or the specific sales, search Small Business Saturday on Facebook.