Shop local to help make our community grow

Our mission is to increase awareness of how shopping locally creates economic growth in the Marshall community.

— Marshall Area Chamber of Commerce

A profile on today’s front page presents a good reminder for us about the benefits of shopping local. Shauna Bjorklund tells her story about taking over the Gambler Sports Bar and Grill from longtime owner Tom Pearcy. The 2012 Tracy High School graduate also earned a marketing degree at Southwest Minnesota State University.

“Owning a business was something I’d thought about,” she said. “It was something I maybe wanted at some point in the future. I didn’t think it would happen this soon.”

Bjorklund’s opportunity leads us to the importance of supporting our local businesses. She is joining the ranks of small business ownership that makes our community unique. Each small business offers merchandise and services that is important for Main Street prosperity and growth. A community that doesn’t grow is a community that is stagnant and offers little to local consumers.

The mission statement above addresses the ongoing battle for community dollars. Of course, it’s easy to open the laptop and click onto our favorite online shopping sites. Meanwhile, we complain when a store on Main Street closes or favorite restaurant in town closes its doors for good.

Our local businesses, more than ever, need our support. Before reaching for that laptop, think about visiting a local business. There are good reasons to do that. The Chamber’s website lists some of those reasons:

• Charities and nonprofits receive more support from local businesses

• Local businesses invest in the community

• Keep/add jobs in the community

• Increased local spending brings additional opportunities for spending

• It’s your community — do your part to keep it growing

While the media continues to remind us of possible national recession on the horizon, here in Marshall there are signs of optimism. Last week Harbor Freight announced plans to open a location at the old ShopKo building. Meanwhile, the Atlantic Place Restaurant is expected to open soon at the old Bello Cucina location. These larger businesses that can be anchors for our smaller businesses offering more shopping options here in Marshall.

The solution to maintaining a thriving business community that offers plenty of options when it comes to merchandise and services starts with all of us.

Shop local and watch our community grow.


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