Small Business Saturday generating excitement in Greencastle-Antrim

PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot
The Greencastle-Antrim community is mobilized for Small Business Saturday, Nov. 29. The Echo Pilot produced a special guide for the day. It was inserted in the Nov. 17 edition and is available at businesses around town, including the Echo Pilot office, 29 Center Square.

Greencastle-Antrim merchants are participating in Small Business Saturday (SMS) on Nov. 29, and are optimistic that shoppers will have skipped Black Friday or at least saved some items on their list to buy from local businesses.

The premise of SMS is that a bulk of the money spent in town stays in town to support the local economy. It helps small businesses to succeed, employees to keep jobs, retailers to be able to support local activities, designers to have markets and suppliers to have outlets for their products.

Small Business Saturday is sandwiched between the famous day after Thanksgiving sales (which now have creeped into Thanksgiving Day), and Cyber Monday, when online retailers promote their specials.

Since its debut in 2010 by founder American Express, SBS has gained traction.

Denise Urban at Anna’s Paperworks helped coordinate SMS last year.

“It was awesome to see so many people show up to shop and give their support to small businesses in Greencastle,” she said. “It was one of our best sales days of the year. Most of the downtown merchants reported a successful day.”

JoAnne Eyer of Inner Beauty was taken by surprise with the customer traffic.

“It was a wonderful day,” she said. “I had no idea we’d be so busy.”

She is hoping that at her new location, which has more visibility, sales will even double.

The day went well at Carl’s Drug too. This year they look forward to seeing customers, who can check out the new gift lines, said Holly Eshleman. The store has a discount coupon valid SBS on regularly priced items.

Urban applied to be a “Neighborhood Champion” this year and received a shipment of tote bags, balloons, signs and other promotional materials which businesses are distributing.

She is also participating in the Etsy Trunk Show, in which small businesses have handmade and vintage items available in the store. Customers don’t have to shop an e-commerce website for items created by artisans.

“I love handcrafted items and am excited when I can buy from local artisans,” she said.

"I enjoy supporting local businesses myself. You can’t beat the service and quaint shopping experience Greencastle has to offer.”