Small Business Saturday keeps holiday shopping close to home

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(WFXR) — Black Friday and Cyber Monday may get all the attention, but you can get great deals and give back to your local economy by saving your holiday shopping for Small Business Saturday on Nov. 30.

Small Business Saturday — a national movement started by American Express in 2010 — celebrates neighborhood businesses on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and even though Nov. 30 may seem far away, five communities across southwest Virginia have already shown support for the #ShopSmall movement.

SMITH MOUNTAIN LAKE: The Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce offers tips and tools for both shops and shoppers on their Facebook page.

“Every dollar kept local is an investment in the success of area businesses, the ones that spur our local economy and development year-round,” says Christopher Finley, executive director of SMLRCC. “Plus, Smith Mountain Lake offers amazing shopping opportunities such as art galleries, jewelry stores, gift and souvenir shops, home and garden outlets, clothing boutiques and sporting goods stores to name a few. I think you’ll find our merchants are friendly, eager to assist and truly appreciate your business.”

SALEM-ROANOKE: The Facebook page for the Salem-Roanoke County Chamber of Commerce illustrates its enthusiasm for residents to “#shoplocal, #eatlocal and #supportlocal” on Small Business Saturday.

BLACKSBURG: From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30, downtown vendors like the Blacksburg Farmers Market, the Matrix Gallery, and the P. Buckley Moss Gallery will offer holiday discounts and drawings.

Blacksburg will also host a variety of events such as the Free Family Film Fest starting at 10 a.m. at the Lyric Theatre — which includes free popcorn for any guest with a receipt dated Nov. 30 from any downtown business — and snacks and story time at the Main Street Inn at 3 p.m. For more information, visit the the Downtown Blacksburg, Inc. Facebook page.

LYNCHBURG: According to Chris Faraldi at the Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance, “80 percent of our membership is small business, so we want to do everything we can to support those businesses.” The Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance will soon begin their social media campaign for Small Business Saturday to help raise awareness of the fact that money can go much farther with smaller businesses.

MARTINSVILLE: Uptown Martinsville plans to go above and beyond by celebrating the Twelve Days of Small Business Saturday. Starting Tuesday, Nov. 19, boxes containing free “Uptown Bonus Bucks” will be hidden around the uptown area. Martinsville Uptown will post daily hints about where shoppers can find these boxes on their Facebook page.

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