Downtown Elkin was bustling with people Saturday as area residents and visitors chose to “shop small” and support local businesses on the busiest shopping weekend of the year.
Shop Small Saturday is a designed to focus on and encourage shopping in small businesses throughout the nation, and that was just what customers were doing in Elkin.
“We did it last year and had a really good time, so we decided to do it again this year,” said Erin Wooten, who was spending the day shopping with her daughter, Sarah Dinkins of Wilmington. “We are just Christmas shopping for the family.”
Wooten said her husband owns Wooten’s Lawn Care, and so it is important for them to support local, too. “We like to support local businesses, especially since he’s a local business. We go to Kennedy’s and Vestal Auctions all the time, and we eat at 222 Public House, in fact that’s where we ate supper last night.”
And the focus on small businesses, which include a passport program where customers could get special passports stamped at least four or five participating businesses to be put in a drawing for downtown dollars, seemed to be a plus with business owners as well.
“We have been really busy this morning,” said Mary Shore of The Sample Store. “I call it ‘bow’ time.”
Owner Janet Key said they had been selling a lot of bows, wreaths and tree skirts. “Christmasy stuff and decorations,” she said of what was selling well.
Beth Walters, a regular shopper downtown at The Sample Store, said after she finished picking up the 10 or so wreaths Key did for her house, “I’m getting ready to go to Habitat [ReStore], it’s my next favorite store.”
For Robin Mathis of North Wilkesboro, Elkin wasn’t the only Shop Small Saturday event she would be attending. “We just wanted to hit the small shops and support them. We love to support the small businesses here in Elkin, and from here we’re going to North Wilkesboro and hit there, too,” she said of she and her husband’s day of shopping. “We try to do this every year.”
Carrie Vestal, owner of Diana’s Books and More, said she didn’t know what to expect during the weekend since it was her first year owning the store. “It’s been great. There have been a lot of people looking for the adult coloring books,” she said.
“We had a fabulous Black Friday,” Vestal said, noting she decided to open Friday just during the afternoon hours because she “figured everyone would hit the big stores early. It was a great day.”
And Kyra Royall, owner at Ivy Ridge Traditions, also said the weekend was a successful one. “It’s been crazy, a good crazy,” she said as she pointed out the 25-percent off store-wide sale she was hosting to a customer. “We’ve been giving out [Shop Small] bags, and yesterday was busy, too.
“It was better weather so people come out more,” said Royall.
Wendy Byerly Wood may be reached at 336-258-4035 or on Twitter @wendywoodeditor.