• Jim Aycock and Erin Dalton are opening Humble Abodes at 39 W. Main St. on Black Friday. Jim’s family was part owner of The Plunderosa and worked there for 12 years before it closed. Humble Abodes will bring back many of the popular items and services you have missed since The Plunderosa closed. Call Humble Abodes at (912) 489-HOME (4663) for more information.
• Bernard’s Jewelers, 23999 U.S. Highway 80 E., has “new” owners. After the recent passing of Bernard Olliff, longtime employees Pamela Anderson, Polly Reed Schuman and Pamela Reed were handpicked by the Olliffs for ownership. The three ladies have 76 combined years of experience, all of which they gained from Bernard and Pat Olliff. The entire staff has made a commitment to Bernard and Pat to continue the business they founded and loved for years to come. Even though the ownership has changed, you can expect the same great service, commitment and loyalty to each client that you have come to appreciate over the years. (912) 764-5379.
• Statesboro attorney’s Dustin and Beverly Barr, of Barr Law Office, have purchased the old Ladybugs Frame Shop building at 713A S. Main St. They have begun renovations and hope to have their office relocated there in a couple of months. The Barrs specialize in person injury and workers compensation law. Contact them at (912) 681-2277.
• The final Farmers Market of the season will be held today from 6-8 p.m. This marks the seventh annual Shopping by Lantern Light and has become a popular downtown Thanksgiving tradition.
In two days, we will all gather with family and friends to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. It is a special day for many reasons, but most importantly for allowing us a time to reflect on the bountiful blessings we have all enjoyed over the past year.
Those of us who own small businesses see it as a special day of rest before one of the most important shopping days of the year, Black Friday.
The day's name was originated in the 1960s in Philadelphia as a description for the heavy and disruptive pedestrian and vehicle traffic that would occur on the day after Thanksgiving.
In the '70s, the term was adopted by small businesses and other retailers who traditionally operated at a financial loss (in the red) from January through November. Black Friday, for many small businesses, is the point where many turn a profit for the year or were "in the black."
We have slogged through the Great Recession, which started in 2008, and we have seen some creative social movements to help us all refocus on the important role locally owned small businesses play in the success of our community.
One of my favorites is www.the350project.net, which was launched in 2009. Added to the financial challenges created by the recession was the massive increase in the use of the Internet, with the appeal of the simplicity of shopping online. More than ever before, the brick-and-mortar, mom-and-pop shops on which our nation and community were built were being hit with a double whammy.
The 3/50 Project helped remind shoppers of the important role these small businesses play. The campaign asks that you think about three locally owned small businesses you would miss if they closed. It then encourages you to pick three small businesses and spend $50 per month with each of them and help save them and the local economy.
Because nearly 70 percent of what America produces is for personal consumption, shopping local is critical to their survival.
The 3/50 website explains the campaign by asking you to: "Stop in. Say hello.
"Pick up something that brings a smile," the site continues. "Your purchases are what keeps that business around.
"If half the employed population spent $50 each month in locally owned independent businesses, it would generate more than $42.6 billion in revenue.
"Here's another startling statistic: For every $100 spent in locally owned independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll, and other expenditures. If you spend that in a national chain, only $43 stays here. Spend it online and nothing comes home."
Piggybacking off the success of the 3/50 movement in 2010, American Express created its Small Business Saturday campaign, which is the day after Black Friday.
This campaign is the cornerstone of the "Shop Small Movement," a year-round campaign to celebrate and support small businesses every day.
There are more than 300 small businesses in Bulloch County participating in the "Shop Small" campaign on Saturday. If you are an American Express card holder, log onto www.ShopSmall.com and register your card to participate.
You must do this before Saturday. Use your registered American Express card to spend $10 or more on Small Business Saturday at a participating business and you will get a $10 statement credit for each qualifying transaction. You can shop with up to three qualifying small businesses and get a total of $30 in statement credits.
Go to www.shopsmall.com to view a list of businesses in Bulloch County that are participating, to register your card and to learn more about the event.
As you are developing your plan of attack for the busiest shopping weekend of the year, please shop local for as many items as you can.
The following is something I found on Facebook and it sums up the importance of shopping local very well.
"When you buy from a family owned business, you are not helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team jersey, a mom or dad put food on the table, a family pay a mortgage, or a student pay for college. Our customers are our shareholders and they are the ones we strive to make happy."
Have a great Thanksgiving and thank you for supporting small businesses in Bulloch County.
Please email DeWayne at email@example.com or give him a call at (912) 489-9499.