Favorite Five: Shopping Local

Avoid parking lots and shopping malls for Black Friday and beyond. Instead, preserve your mental and physical health by shopping small and contributing to your local economy for the holidays this year!

In addition to improving your overall health, shopping locally ensures that nearly 70 cents on every dollar remains in the local economy. When you shop small, you help to build a better local economy, reduce environmental impact, put your taxes to good use, create jobs, get better customer service, keep the community unique, and you encourage local prosperity. Whew — that’s a lot of good!

Last year I wrote a guide to shopping locally during the holiday season. I still recommend all of those places (seriously, check it out), but decided to write an updated list for 2016. With the holidays just around the corner, I think it’s appropriate to write a special edition Favorite Five just in time for Small Business Saturday,* and to encourage everyone to #ShopSmall on November 26.

The City Flea
Cincinnati’s famed urban flea market makes its holiday reprise on Saturday, December 17. Patronize local and regional vendors and local food trucks at Washington Park’s next edition of The City Flea.

Corporate
Have an exclusive shoe and apparel fan to buy for this holiday season? Visit either of Corporate’s locations — Hyde Park and OTR — to check out footwear and apparel for men, women, and children at Cincinnati’s premier sneaker and clothing shop.

Gifts
Some of my favorite places to peruse gifts in the area are MiCA 12/v, a local art, fine craft, and design-based gift shop in OTR; Park + Vine, Cincinnati’s green general store featuring local gifts and a vegan eatery; and Your Friends and Neighbors, a handmade goods store and the newest addition to East Walnut Hills.

HOMAGE
In addition to its OTR location, the Columbus-based retro and vintage sports clothier now calls Liberty Center home. HOMAGE always has great deals after the holiday, so keep your eye out and support local for Small Business Saturday.

Kid Row
King Arthur’s Court Toys, The Spotted Goose, and Blue Manatee make up “Kid Row” in Oakley, which is a stretch of local stores featuring games and toys, clothes and accessories, and books (respectively). Have a little one to shop for this holiday season? Grab some coffee from neighboring Deeper Roots then shop local on Kid Row.

Honorable Mention: Argos All-Natural Pet Food and SupplyArt on Vine, The Candle Lab, Cincy Shirts, Elm & Iron, Findlay Market, Headlines ApparelHi-Bred, Koch Sporting Goods, Pet WantsRookwood Pottery, various flea markets and craft shows around town, and more independently-owned businesses.

Let the CB Connector or Red Bike connect your trip to shops, restaurants, parks, and drinkeries when you spend time in the urban core this holiday season.

Disclaimer: this is only a short list ideas for shopping local this year, and is hardly a dent in every option in the city. Get out and explore, and contribute to our local economy!

*Small Business Saturday is an initiative to shop small and to support local businesses. In fact,“For every $100 spent at a locally-owned business, $73 remains in the local economy.” I am a huge proponent for shopping locally, so if you’re looking for ideas regarding where to patronize this holiday season, this list is for you!

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