Small Business Saturday to boost local economy

Local business owners weigh in

Friday, November 26, 2010 - 3:56pm

BATON ROUGE, La (WVLA) -- Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and now, a new tradition makes up the four-day shopping weekend after Thanksgiving. Saturday marks the first-ever national day for small business shopping.

It's the biggest shopping day of the year, and Time Warp is empty. Time Warp is one of many independently-owned shops in Mid City. The biggest vintage shop in Louisiana still can't compete with big retail businesses.

"We're just a hidden gem here in Baton Rouge," says manager Lorraine Henley. Most of Time Warp's business comes from word of mouth.

According to the National Retail Federation, about 195 million people shopping in stores and online spent more than $41 billion in the four day weekend following Thanksgiving last year. Those national shopping days target large chains and online retailers.

"We just can't do the discounts like they can," says Henley. "We also don't have the inventory like that. Everything's one of a kind here."

That's why this year, Small Business Saturday will help support the local economy.

"I think it's brilliant," says Marsha Rish, owner of Honeymoon Bungalow on Government Street. "Most small businesses, you can drive right up to the door. You don't have to fight a crowd or a mob. It just sets us apart. You're not going to get that at the mall."

"There's no headquarters a thousand miles away," adds Henley. "It's just all Baton Rouge."

That's reason enough for some shoppers. Sixteen-year-old Claire Albrecht has been shopping at stores like Time Warp and Honeymoon Bungalow for years. "Why not shop at small businesses and get all this cool little stuff?" she asks. "It's normally a lot cheaper than going to Macy's."

Local shop owners are keeping their fingers crossed that Saturday will bring new business to help keep them afloat.

"We're hanging on folks and we need your support. We're here for you."

Time Warp Hours: Mon. 12-5, Tues.-Sat. 11-6, Sun. 12-4

Phone number: 377-8550

You can also find Time Warp on Facebook

Honeymoon Bungalow: 343-4622

Find out more about Small Business Saturday at http://smallbusinesssaturday.com/

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