WNY community supports local shops during Small Business Saturday

Local News

NIAGARA FALLS N.Y. (WIVB) — Shoppers all across Western New York are supporting local businesses during this year’s Small Business Saturday event. It’s a day all about shopping at local businesses to get those gifts crossed off the Christmas list.

“We made all this with our hands, late nights after our kids were in bed. After our 9 to 5’s. So you’re supporting us,” Rachael Long, who co-owns Grace & Rose.

“It’s really like you’re supporting us and not the big chains that are making a ton of money already so,” Cierra Rulli, who co-owns Grace & Rose.

During Small Business Saturday, more than 75 artisans and vendors filled the Conference and Event Center in Niagara Falls. People could shop for sweets, jewelry, scarves or printed T-shirts. All made locally.

“All these people have put a lot of hard work into their products and they want you to be as happy as you are with the product as they are making it. So shop local, be good to somebody,” said Matthew Catanese, who owns The Sitting Club.

People were also shopping locally along Main Street in East Aurora on Saturday. Many people stopped by Vidler’s for some holiday shopping.

“I’ve lived in the Western New York my whole life and this takes me back to my childhood when my mom used to bring us here,” said Cindy Godus, while out shopping. “It’s more personable when you shop small businesses. The uniqueness of it. The items you can find are very unique. The big boxes, it’s all the same.”

“Corporate America is taking over the country and I’d just rather support mom and pops than a big box retailer,” said shopper Dixie Stephens.

Co-owner Don Vidler says the store has been busy so far this season and they’re hoping that continues throughout the holidays.

“It’s normally a very busy day, one of our busiest days of the year and we’re very appreciative to the local people, not only in East Aurora but Western New York, that make a real effort to go out and support the local shops. It’s terrific. We enjoy it,” he said.

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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