Jacob Brower: Shop locally this holiday season
Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of year.
Some of my fondest memories involve the smell of turkey and pumpkin pie, the sounds of my loved ones' laughter, and the excitement of gridiron battles on TV.
Once the wonderful tryptophan-induced haze wears off, it will be time to think about buying the perfect gifts for the people on your Christmas list. While tradition may compel you to jump in your car and head to the mall, we urge you to shop locally this holiday season.
Go downtown, and around to the other stores around town. You'll see your neighbors behind the counter. You'll be surprised at the quality of goods in the stores. You may even wonder why you haven't looked right around the corner before.
One of the best parts about shopping locally is that the money you spend here stays here. Business owners pay their local employees, who spend
their money here. Business owners pay sales taxes locally to city and county governments. That money goes to our schools, our streets, our parks and our police and fire protection.
If you make an effort to shop locally, you will also find that the perfect gift for everyone on your list has been right in front of your nose this whole time. This area is blessed with great local businesses ran by great people who will greet you with a smile. Many of these businesses advertised today's edition. As you peruse the paper, I encourage you to make plans to visit their stores and check out the wonderful goods they have to offer.
I recently saw a Facebook post that hit the nail on the head: "When you buy from a small local business, you are not paying for a third vacation home for some CEO. You are paying for dance lessons; you are buying a little-league uniform. You are putting food on a family's table and sending a student to college. You are making the American Dream come true for somebody in your community -- somebody you probably know."
To quote Cousin Eddie of National Lampoon's fame, that's the gift that keeps on giving the whole year.
Jacob Brower is the publisher of the Cassville Democrat. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 417-847-2610.