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Small Business Saturday: 800 participants in Santa Cruz County

| Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Nov 28, 2015 The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at

Santa Cruz Sentinel, November 28, 2015

If local business owners see a surge in shoppers Saturday, they can thank Barbara Mason.

As the county’s economic development coordinator, she recruited more than 800 local retailers, restaurants and service providers to join Santa Cruz County Small Business Saturday. In October, her goal was 500.

“If you’re looking for unique gifts or gift certificates to fulfill your holiday shopping needs, local businesses are the way to go,” said Mason. “They are the backbone of our economy, and spending your money locally strengthens and supports neighborhood businesses, jobs and the community.”

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance, based in Minneapolis, cites studies that found buying from your neighborhood shop generates more economic benefit for the region because local retailers tend to buy more goods and services from other local businesses than large chains headquartered elsewhere.

That message may be resonating with shoppers. Stacy Mitchell, senior researcher at the Institute, notes its survey found shoppers nationwide shifted away from big-box shopping last year when independent retailers reported their sales rose 5 percent.


 More than 100 businesses in downtown and Westside Santa Cruz are participating.  Dohna Lee Dohnadale, proprietor of Made in Santa Cruz on the Santa Cruz Wharf, plans a storewide 10 percent off sale.  “Nothing of ours is at Target,” she said.

Savings of 20 percent off are available on the “Screaming Hand” apron and mitt design by Santa Cruz designer Jimbo Phillips, Santa Cruz theme mugs and cutting boards and Santa Cruz Skateboards classic dot sweatshirts.

Primrose and Lace Lingerie, a shop Vanessa Wennstrom opened a year ago at 3657 Portola Drive, will pay sales tax on purchases and offer a free gift with a purchase while supplies last.

Bookshop Santa Cruz at 1520 Pacific Ave. downtown offers shoppers who spend $20 Saturday a chance to win 10 of the booksellers’ favorite books of 2015. The shop will stay open until 11 p.m. Saturday.

Dave Baer, co-owner of Water at Morrissey, 1315 Water St. is offering holiday treats from Pacific Cookie Co., Mutari hot chocolate and Santa Cruz Mountain wines.

More than 40 artists and crafters will sell their wares at the Santa Cruz Mountains Makers Market at Felton Community Hall on Highway 9, with live local music another attraction.


Read the full story here.