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In recognition of Small Business Saturday, Visit Tyler is hosting a Small Business Pop-Up Shop from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Downtown Visitor Center at 110 N. College St. Visit Tyler operates a gift shop there regularly that features items made locally by small businesses. The pop-up shop will feature additional vendors.

It’s what makes Tyler unique. The bamboo and coconut scented candles that are made locally. The rose charm hand-crafted by a local jewelry maker.

“Particularly in the holiday season, people are looking at just trying to find a way they can support small businesses, especially with what they’ve been through this last year,” said Shari Lee, president of Visit Tyler, the city’s convention and visitor’s bureau that operates under the Tyler Chamber of Commerce.

In recognition of Small Business Saturday, which is this weekend and falls between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Visit Tyler is hosting a Small Business Pop-Up Shop from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Downtown Visitor Center at 110 N. College St. Visit Tyler operates a gift shop there regularly that features items made locally by small businesses. The pop-up shop will feature additional vendors.

“As a tourism entity, as the visitor’s bureau, it’s important that we have our local small businesses bringing their items, because that’s what makes Tyler unique,” Lee said. “You can’t really duplicate what we offer in our city anywhere else because these are one of a kind businesses that are only unique to us.”

Shoppers think buying local from small businesses is important too. A recent American Express survey showed 81% of survey participants said it’s important to purchase gifts this holiday season that support small local businesses. Also, “75% of consumers surveyed agree that shopping in-person at a small business brings them joy and drives excitement for the holidays.”

It’s also good for the economy.

The U.S. Small Business Administration, in a 2018 study, reported small businesses “are the lifeblood of the U.S. economy.” At that time, they accounted for 44 percent of the country’s economic activity, a number that had started to decline.

Six local small businesses will participate in the pop-event on Saturday: Lou C & Levi; Random Flower Co.; Urban Deaux Candles; Chelsea’s Delights; Coloring with Kate and Colonel Dave’s barbecue rub. The store also regularly stocks items from 10 local small businesses.

The shop is typically busy with people looking for unique, local items, Lee said. She said Visit Tyler is excited about Saturday’s event.

“On a broad scale (shopping at local small businesses) is important,” she said. “I think people want to support small businesses because they know how valuable it is to give something that’s meaning to a small business and keep them going forward.”

Shoppers can enter to win a $200 shopping spree by shopping at small businesses in downtown Tyler, according to City of Tyler public information officer Adriana Rodriguez. Every $5 spent at a downtown business equals one entry.

Shoppers can be entered into the drawing by bringing their receipts from the day to the visitors center, 110 N College Ave. or emailing their receipts by Monday to mainstreet@tylertexas.com

 
 

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