Buy Local First Day in Corvallis

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Despite the downtown Black Friday shopping buzz, small Corvallis shops are preparing for Buy Local First Day. Or Small Business Saturday.

The Corvallis Sustainability Coalition and the Corvallis Independent Business Alliance teamed up for the annual event. Independently-owned businesses will offer discounts as an incentive for people to shop locally.

“I think it’s really important to support small business owners,” said shopper Clare VonderHaar. “I kind of shy away from larger department stores unless they have something I can’t get someplace else.”

Business owners say the more money that is spent locally, the more money is circulated within the community.

“More money you spend when you spend local stays in the community than if you bought from a big conglomerate,” said Animal Crackers Operations Manager Shannon Proctor-Hussey.

The Corvallis Sustainability Coalition says for every $100 spent at a local business, $43 stays within the community compared to $13 that is spent at a national chain. Employees at Animal Crackers, a pet supply store in Corvallis, say once they get their paychecks, they buy locally too.

“We take our money, and we go shop at another local establishment, keeping even more money in our local economy,” Proctor-Hussey said.

Many Hands Trading, a downtown gift store, donates between $1,000-2,000 a month to a local nonprofit as part of its Monthly Day of Sharing. Once a month, 25% of sales goes to a nonprofit. Next month, on Dec. 11, 25% of sales will go to the Center Against Rape and Domestic Violence (CARDV).

“I think the most important thing is how much money is given back to the community,” said store manager Theresa McLaren. “Statistically, they’ve found that 250% more is given to nonprofits compared to national chains.”

For a full list of the participating stores for Buy Local First Day, click here.

“I never want the smaller, independent stores to go away,” VonderHaar said. “And so I really think it’s up to all of us to support them. Or else all we’re going to have are huge chain stores to shop in. And then you don’t have the individuality.”

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