Over at Get Rich Slowly‘s site, J.D. has a great article today called “Why I Buy Local“. And as I started to add a comment, I noticed that all the other comments from other readers were pretty as long as a typical blog entry by themselves. So I decided to add to his work and put in my two cents over here at www.moneyreasons.com.
So here is my take:
I live in a small middle class city in the MidWestern region of the Unites States. We chose to live in such a community because of the charm of the community and the fact that they have an excellent public school system (okay, I confess the school system was a larger element in our choice)!
We still have quite few locally (mom and pop) owned restaurants, farmers, 1 movie theater, 1 drive-in theater, hardware shops, coffee shops, auto shops, antique shops and other charming little places.
Now for how we support our local businesses:
- For movies, we’ll wait a bit longer and go to the Drive-in Theater which is only a few miles away! It’s a flat rate per car to get into the Drive-In, so not only are we supporting this great local business, it’s also cheaper than the farther big city theaters. Just for an additional kick, we also invit my wife’s friend and her two kids to go with us. We usually pay for the car entirely, but even then, it’s cheaper than the other theaters in the bigger cities. The sound system isn’t the best but the other great aspects make up for this 🙂
- In the summer, we go to the local farmer’s market and buy our sweet corn from them! It’s almost as cheap as the store bought versions, and taste soooo much better!
- I buy small hardware needs (including sharpening my lawn mower blades) from the local hardware store. It’s not as big or fancy as Lowes, but it has that Normal Rockwell feel that’s just plain cool!
- For breakfast, almost every Saturday, we go to this great little mom and pop restaurant! Everything taste great (eggs, pancakeS, etc), and is cheaper than both Bob Evans and The Cracker Barrel. Oh sure, it’s not as pretty inside as Bob Evans and The Cracker Barrel, but it’s still has a decent enough decor… and the owner is incredible friendly! In fact, its my favorite local business, the fool is almost always perfectly prepared (even the cheap coffee)!
- I confess, I still go to the Starbucks when I am at work (which is out of my city)… but if I’m in town, I go to one of the two cafes that are downtown. The local cafe shops are just as good, and has a personal feeling that’s hard to beat! Plus, the one shop (the one I go to the most) has small local bands that play on Thursday nights (only for a few hours)!
- My wife’s minivan is running oddly, so we took it to our local “around the corner” auto shop. I’ve had great experiences with the owner in the past, and I’m sure he’ll do right by us again!
- We also frequent many other local shops, instead of big chains. We’ve bought stuff at clothing stores, thrift stores, ice cream shops, a root beer stand, antique stores, a tidbit store, local pizza place (Papa Johns is still our stable though) and other such local shops…
Now I hate to say it, but we also shop at Walmart, Giant Eagle and Target, especially for food products. Target is just fun… sorry…
So while we are mostly frugal, we do try to keep the local community in business!!!
So my question is… Do you have any special local business that you support and are incredible proud of?
We love our Drive-In, and would hate to see it go!!!