Push To Support Small Businesses in Milwaukee's Third Ward

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by Elizabeth Fay

MILWAUKEE -- The holiday shopping season is in full swing. Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, shoppers are taking advantage of Small Business Saturday sales.

"I have begun to see a greater number of shoppers out and anxious to participate in Small Business Saturday," says Shoo store manager, Dawn Huibergtse, who works in Milwaukee's Third Ward.

American Express founded the shopping event three years ago to give locally owned stores a boost around Black Friday.

"It's a chance to support some of us smaller independent retailers that are out there and give us a chance to come out and compete with some of the larger retailers that exist," says Lydia Hamilton-Monnie who owns Boutique Larrieux, a plus-size clothing store.

Shoo and Boutique Larrieux are two of many stores in Milwaukee's third ward slashing prices for Small Business Saturday. Huibergtse says she's grateful so many shoppers turned out to support independent retailers.

"Whether it's payroll, or donations back in the community, spending your money in your own community is really important," says Huibergtse.

Customers tell us there are advantages to shopping small and local. They find unique products and superb service.

"They have a lot of great merchandise that you can't find anywhere else," says shopper, Diane Nasgowitz.

"I think you get a lot more personal attention and they are willing to help you weed through the different options and find something that really fits your personality," adds shopper, Amy Ellison.

When it comes to handing over that hard earned cash, some shoppers say they feel better when it goes to friends and neighbors.

"My dad owns a business too and it's important to help out where you can for people that you know," says shopper, Elizabeth Sherchen.

Small Business Saturday comes once a year but business owners hope you'll keep them in mind whenever you need to shop.

"It feels special to us that they are willing to come back to us, time and time again," says Hamilton-Monnie.

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