Small Business Saturday Bolsters Local Economy

By Ari Mason and Abbey Niezgoda
|  Sunday, Dec 1, 2013  |  Updated 11:47 AM EDT
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Stores on Main Street in Mystic opened their doors today, and employees said the initiative is a blessing.

Stores on Main Street in Mystic opened their doors today, and employees said the initiative is a blessing.

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In the wake of Black Friday madness comes Small Business Saturday, a national effort to support “mom and pop shops” and support the local economy.

Stores on Main Street in Mystic opened their doors today, and employees said the initiative is a blessing.

“It’s got to help let people know that we’re here because we can’t really advertise nationally the way larger chains can,” said Ross Mandell of Bartleby’s Coffee.

And while this year Small Business Saturday is geared toward holiday shopping, last year it was a way for towns decimated by Superstorm Sandy to make a comeback and begin the return to normalcy.

“We were closed during Hurricane Sandy for almost a month,” said Annie Philbrick of Banks Square Books in Mystic. “We came back and Small Business Saturday was the biggest day of the year for us.”

Much of the money spent during Small Business Saturday stays in the area and helps to bolster the local economy.

“For every $100 you spend, $68 stays in your community,” said Philbrick.

Store owners said it’s comforting to know that in the age of chain stores and online shopping, customers are still supporting their local shops.

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