Find It Locally, Buy It Locally

On Saturday, November 25… and then from November 30 through December 3… residents and visitors alike can experience Pagosa’s ‘shop local’ events.

November 25 is the national Small Business Saturday event created by American Express. This event has grown since 2009 when during the heart of the recession, the credit card company wanted to draw consumers’ focus to smaller, local businesses and the value they bring to the community. While some of the original credit card cash credits have been replaced with point credits, Small Business Saturday is now not just an American Express event, it is an event that has created a focus on shopping small and shopping local.

Retail businesses can take advantage of the free services through American Express to market your business as a participant of Small Business Saturday. You can actually add your business name, product specialty and other details and download free marketing materials and be listed on a shopping directory. These marketing materials can help you in your physical location with posters and signage as well as your online and social media presence with SBS logos and social posts. Go to www.americanexpress.com/shopsmall to find out more about how you can take advantage of this national campaign.

The 12th annual Parade of Stores Shopping Extravaganza takes place November 30 through December 3. This year there are some exciting changes and partnerships that have been developed by the retailers. Starting on Thursday, November 30, Parade of Stores kicks off with the Art for the Animals event hosted by the Humane Society of Pagosa Springs and held at the 2 Old Crows Gallery on Lewis St. from 5–8pm. Special shopping deals begin in many stores on November 30, and the Art for the Animals event highlights local artists in a community spirit which Pagosa is so well known for. The event is free and attendees can enjoy hors d’oeuvres, cocktails and music while purchasing a unique gift for the holidays or your home.

The Parade of Stores has a few changes to its traditional shopping programs this year. New this year will be the Selfie Shopping Posting. Shopping participants are encouraged to take a selfie IN a store… or many stores. They can post those pictures to social media with #PSParadeofStores and check into the store. Every picture posted will be entered into a drawing for shopping prize packages donated by the participating retail merchants.

Post pictures of all your wish list items or the fun that you are having shopping in one of Pagosa’s many stores. The part of the Shopping Weekend where for every $10 you spend in a participating store you are entered into a drawing for prize packages still continues. Prizes include a trip and shopping sprees. For example, If you spend $100 in a store, you can earn 10 chances to be entered into the drawing.

The more you shop, the more chances you have of winning one of the prize packages.

There are many opportunities for people to reap the benefits of shopping locally. Not only do our stores have unique and practical items, participants of the Parade of Stores can take advantage of great sale items and discounts all throughout town. Additional discount coupons are also being developed to reward all of Pagosa’s shoppers. The traditional “Frequent Stamp Program” has been discontinued this year to be replaced by the Selfie Program. The shopping books will still be available to inform shoppers of the participating stores, their hours and their discounts.

In addition, “like” the Chamber on Facebook and in the weeks prior to the Parade of Stores receive postings on all of the participating stores, the deals they will be offering and their hours of operation.

Shop Local Pagosa – keep your tax dollars circulating in Pagosa and supporting the projects and departments critical to our community.

Mary Jo Coulehan

Mary Jo Coulehan is Executive Director of the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce, and also serves on a number of local and state boards.