BY ARIEL GUILLORY — With Thanksgiving a day away, several businesses and shoppers are preparing for one of the busiest shopping periods of the year.
Though Black Friday has a reputation for providing shoppers with some of the best sales they may see all year, many may not realize that Small Business Saturday also affords shoppers another opportunity to take advantage of merchandise at a reduced price, guaranteeing they will get the most out of their holiday shopping experience.
According to Cinda Baxter, a blogger who helped bring Small Business Saturday to its current prominence, “The idea behind Small Business Saturday, also being promoted on radio and TV and with newspaper advertisements by American Express, is to remind consumers that there is more to holiday shopping than ‘big boxes and national chains,’ and that dollars spent in small, independently owned stores also are an investment in their host communities.”
The American Express corporation now holds the trademark for Small Business Saturday, and they hold several events every year to promote this new shopping trend.
In Hyattsville, several local businesses will be taking advantage of Small Business Saturday by offering their services and merchandise at a reduced cost.
“We’ve been open for 25 years and instead of doing Black Friday specials, we’ve always done a sale the Saturday after Thanksgiving. We’ve always called it ‘Franklins Super Dooper 20 percent off everything in the store sale,’” said Victoria Proctor, the retail store manager at Franklins Restaurant, Brewery, and General Store. “We’ve done that before Small Business Saturday but it is more promotion for us because now people are out for Small Business Saturday.”
Cheryl Fountain, the owner of custom framing shop Frame Savvy, said the business has been participating in Small Business Saturday since opening in its spot six years ago. “We will have free upgrades to conservation glass and we are also going to be selling art from local artist Tiffany Scott at a 10 percent discount. We will also be selling other art pieces from local artists starting at $30,” Fountain said.
Small Business Saturday also allows new businesses the opportunity to present themselves and their merchandise to the public.
“[Signature Pieces] just relocated from Atlanta and we are giving the community of Hyattsville something different. We are a lifestyle store and we have art, home décor, and clothing,” said Wendy Jackson, the owner of designer consignment store Signature Pieces. “For Small Business Saturday, we will have select items ranging from 10 percent to 50 percent off.”
Community Forklift is offering shoppers a chance to support local artists and even create gifts. Stop by their crafting stations and try your hand at making gifts: design a coaster, build a wreath, or carve a butter spreader! They will have local artists, live music, workshops, crafts, food, sales and more on Friday and Saturday.
And if you can’t wait until Small Business Saturday — or just want to skip the lines at the mall — the SoHy Collective is hosting “Light It Up,” a holiday shopping event Friday night. Businesses all along the Route 1 corridor will be lighting up their shops starting at 5 p.m. on Nov. 24 to kick off the holiday shopping season. Many participating shops will be staying open till 8 p.m. and will also be hosting a special event or treat for visitors that night. Also, the first 50 shoppers at Tanglewood Works, Green Owl Design, Artist & Craftsman Supply, Three Little Birds Sewing Co., Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, or Pizzeria Paradiso will receive a “Handmade in Hyattsville” tote bag with purchase.