Shopping locally builds communities

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Locally, this week is Small Business Development Week in Pike County. It’s also National Small Business Week.

Both are set aside each year to recognize the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. More than half of American’s either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of every three news jobs in the United States each year, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

In Pike County, small businesses are the backbone of the community. They line Main Street in Brundidge and enclose Troy’s downtown area in a feeling of history and warmth. Many are more than 75 years old, as noted during the Pike County Area Chamber of Commerce Small Business Development Week breakfast on Tuesday.

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When we walk through the doors of area businesses, we see people we grew up with, parents of the children our children play with, friends of our grandparents, and most of all friendly faces.

Local businesses provide jobs. Our money spent there means tax revenue that goes toward improving area infrastructure and to area schools. Our relationships with the small businesses in Pike County are symbiotic. We get as much back from shopping locally as the storeowners get from our dollars spent.

Let’s remember this the next time we need produce, or clothing, or healthcare, or furniture. Every dollar we spend in Pike County matters.

When local stores are successful, downtowns thrive and communities attract new businesses – and that’s good for everybody.