Supporting Mom and Pop

| May 20, 2009 | 2 Comments


I read an article recently in my local paper about how local businesses are fairing in this tough economic climate. The recession is hitting just about everyone and most people I know have had to cut back on spending and disposable income. I know my family has. But I was encouraged to read that despite the tough times, many small businesses are actually thriving.

When money is tight, people tend to think more about where they are spending those hard-earned dollars. And more and more people are choosing to spend those dollars at local businesses, wanting to support their neighbors and not those big chain stores. And rightly so , if you ask me.

It is these businesses that make our communities so great. People just like us, our neighbors and our friends, putting their heart and soul into their business. People that had an idea and a passion and gave them legs.  People that depend on their small business income to support their families.  From my favorite children’s shop to the greatest little popcorn shop ever, the places I love in my local downtown are locally owned by people who depend on their neighbors (like me) to keep going.

Here at Chicagonista, we are all about finding and highlighting these local businesses that depend on us for their livelihood. These small little “mom and pop” joints ARE the local gems in every community that makes your area unique and original.  We have to give these businesses, these people, the best shot we can to make it in this economy.  If they go, so does the charm of our hometown, the character and the heart.

We all have to shop at big chain stores sometimes.  It is easier and sometimes more economical to buy basic items at stores that can offer discounted prices.  But there is no face to that shopping.  It is all about getting the lowest receipt total possible.  Shopping local businesses is more than that though.  It is about getting that outfit from your local clothing boutique that was hand-selected (and maybe even hand-made!).  It is about knowing the owner and wanting him/her to be able to keep their doors open.  I would much rather spend my dollars in support of a fellow small business owner than just contributing to some corporation’s large pot of cash.  It is about buying things of value that you wouldn’t be able to get just anywhere.

So, the next time you need a gift or an accent for your home or a special outfit for that special date, think about who you are supporting with your dollar.  And if there is a mom-and-pop store that may have what you need, spend your dollars there and support your neighbor.  These economic times can be tough for us all.  But if we stick together, it will make the road easier for each of us.

Shop Local Y’all!!

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Category: Featured

About the Author ()

Farrah Brown is a part-time nurse and full-time babywearing mom who is always on the lookout for those "hidden gems" in the western suburbs. She can also be found blogging at BabyLove Slings and ChicagoMomsBlog and her newest project, DupageMamas. Oh, and check out her beautiful handmade slings at

Comments (2)

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  1. Jen says:

    Great article! Totally agree with you about supporting the mom-and-pops during a downturn…when those stores disappear, downtowns and business districts become empty and run-down, which is followed by crime and low property values happen. When you support small businesses, you’re investing in your community!

  2. Ms. Kita says:

    Absolutely right.

    Have you heard of The 3/50 Project?

    It’s a simple concept…you think of three local small businesses that you want to keep in your town. Then pledge to spend $50 a month among those three. It’s $50 total, not $50 each. A small investment to keep our local small business community vital and thriving.

    You can sign up to support local retailers at their website ( and find local retailers by you. They’re on facebook & twitter too.

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