Arlington is filled with local shops and plenty of gift options for this holiday season.
The Board of Selectmen has approved free parking around town on Saturdays so folks can shop without worrying about filling the meter.
And according to the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, $68 out of every $100 spent in local businesses stay here, as opposed to only $43 spent at non-local businesses.
Those facts alone sound like great reasons to avoid big box stores and stay in town to shop. But some of us still need a little extra convincing.
So here are 10 more great reasons, from the , why we should try to patronize our many locally owned stores:
- Vote with your dollars: When purchases are made at locally owned (rather than nationally-owned) businesses, more money stays in the community because local businesses purchase from other local businesses and service providers.
- Most new jobs are provided by locally owned businesses: Small local businesses are the largest employer nationally, and in Arlington they provide the most new jobs to residents.
- Embrace what makes us different: Our one-of-a-kind businesses are an integral part of our distinctive character. The unique character of Arlington is what brought us here and will keep us here.
- Invest in the community: Local businesses are owned and operated by people who live here, work here and are invested in the community with more than just their dollars.
- Get better service: In local businesses, you know the person behind the counter and they know you. They have a deep understanding of their products and take time to serve their customers.
- Promote competition and diversity: A multitude of small businesses—each selecting products based on the needs of their local customers and not on a national sales plan—guarantees a much broader range of product choices.
- Help out the environment: Local business has a lighter environmental impact. Shopping at locally owned businesses is more energy efficient, requiring shorter travel distances and reducing the carbon footprint of goods sold, which means less pollution.
- Put your taxes to good use: Local businesses require comparatively little infrastructure investment and make more efficient use of public service than most “big box” stores or national chains.
- Local businesses encourage investment in the community: A growing body of economic research shows that entrepreneurs and skilled workers are more likely to settle in communities that preserve their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character.
- Support community groups: Nonprofit organizations receive an average 350 percent greater support from local business owners than they do from non-locally owned businesses.