BRONXVILLE N.Y. - In an attempt to encourage shoppers to support their local business during the busiest shopping weekend of the year, American Express is sponsoring the third annual Small Business Saturday.
Placed between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday encourages residents to shop locally. Anyone with an American Express card can register to receive a one-time $25 credit if they make a purchase of $25 or more at a local business this Saturday.
Small business owners in Bronxville do their best to attract residents to shop locally on Small Business Saturday, said Susan Piper, co-owner of Silk Road and the Bronxville Chamber of Commerce president .
"I know many stores around here that are doing holiday promotions to bring shoppers in," said Piper. "The event hasn't been around for too long, but seems to be getting better with each passing year. The whole holiday time is important for Bronxville businesses because it's really a big source of revenue that keeps stores open."
A part of Bronxville's success is that many of its stores offer personal service that the big chains simply can't match, said Piper.
"I think businesses are cautiously optimistic about the customer turnout this Saturday," said Piper. "My advice would be for people to shop locally because it would really help out our community. Hurricane Sandy seemed to bring out a sense of community because residents seen how many stores they knew were closed and realized how much they didn't like it."
Many Bronxville residents including Mary Pat Kenlon agree that shopping locally should be a priority to keep local business afloat.
"We're just heartbroken with how many local businesses have gone under in recent times," said Kenlon. "Personally, I'm doing everything I can to help including shopping for the holidays right here in Bronxville. Our local hardware store went under, and as a community we shouldn't have allowed that to happen. I'm really hoping that we realize what's going on and things really pick up."
Holiday shopping in Bronxville is usually pretty brisk, but getting people in after Black Friday is tricky, said La Dentelliere owner Chuck Anderson.
"With Small Business Saturday I think residents show mixed support," said Anderson. "You have a lot of people who like to shop online, and in the big retail stores to get the big deals, and I really can't compete with that. My rates are fixed so what's going to make the difference is residents understanding their local businesses need them, and then making right decisions to strengthen the community."