Morristown Kick Off Shop Local Effort

11/22/12 5:36PM By Amy Kolb Noyes

Between Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and all those door-busting deals at big box stores, it's more than apparent the holiday shopping season is upon us.

In rural places like Morristown, it's easy for shoppers to hop online, or drive to a hub like Williston. It's also not far to venture across the border to New Hampshire to take advantage of chain-store promotions.

But Morristown is home to around 75 locally owned businesses. And this year they're banding together to encourage shoppers to stay close to home. The shopkeepers are calling their campaign: Keep Your Money Home for the Holidays.

Tricia Follert is Morristown's community development coordinator. She says people don't realize how important it is to support their local merchants.

"We want to encourage people to shop locally. People need to understand that if they don't shop locally, we don't have local businesses," Follert said. 

Here's how the program works: Each business has donated two gift certificates. With each purchase, shoppers can enter their name in a raffle.

Winners will be drawn in mid-January. They'll either receive a gift certificate to the store where they shopped, or a set of five gift certificates to other area businesses.

Follert says shop owners are hoping the second drawing will bring some new customers through their doors, in a time when business is slow.

"We really ran it until mid-January because that's a time when businesses start to go down in their sales. So maybe this will bring someone new into a business they've never been in, or they'll see someone new," Follert said.

Follert says this holiday season could make or break some of Morristown's locally owned businesses.

"These businesses, as most small businesses, are struggling. But if we support them, they're going to be here for us. So we need to be there for them," Follert said.

Morristown's buy locally campaign runs through January 15th.

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