ANGLETON — Every year, Small Business Saturday encourages members of the community to shop small and to shop local in order to support the small businesses that help economies thrive.

“I used to be a small-business owner, so I like to support local and keep people in business,” shopper Cheryl Rumsey, who owned Hair’s Gone Wild in Lake Jackson for 14 years and was one of the shoppers participating in Angleton’s Small Town Saturday event. “I think they can offer a more personal shopping experience than what you get online. It just makes people want to come back.”

When people shop locally, they’re investing in the economy of their community. Money that comes back to the community through shopping locally creates the wealth needed for residents to have a better quality of life, said Beth Journaey, president/CEO of the Greater Angleton Chamber of Commerce. In turn, it allows those local businesses to provide jobs and give back to the community, she said.

“I’m a big boutiquer,” said Meaghan Cobbs, who came out to do her Christmas shopping. “If you shop small business, you’re gonna be able to help the little people.”

The boutique businesses downtown on Velasco Street, including Brazos Avenue Market, Beau Bazaar, Bella Rose and Back Road Beauties, each ran a special sale to celebrate Small Business Saturday. Brazos Avenue Market also incorporated refreshments and swag bags, valued at about $100, for the first 10 customers to spend $150.

“We try to bring an experience, and value,” said Pam Mercer, a co-owner of Brazos Avenue Market with her daughter Taryn Wollam. Brazos Avenue Market has three locations; the Angleton boutique is the newest, having opened in 2016.

Business in the downtown area has picked up some since the opening of The Dirty South, according to Linda Alcaraz, owner of Bella Rose Boutique, which is just a couple of doors down from the restaurant. People have shown more interest in her store, so she’s staying open later Friday and Saturday evenings, she said.

More interest in her store also offers Alcaraz the chance to recommend other businesses in the area to shoppers.

“I don’t feel that we should be in competition with another shop,” she said. “We should help each other out and build up the economy in Angleton.”

Employees of small businesses can take away just as much of a positive experience as the shoppers can.

“It’s kind of like being part of a family,” said Madison Webb, a sales associate at Back Road Beauties. She enjoys the customer service aspect of it too, because being a small business in a small town facilitates getting to know people and having regular customers, she said.

Relationships with customers are a huge priority of local small businesses and plays a role in those businesses’ success.

“We’re hoping to create customer relationships and help them to realize the importance of shopping small and shopping local, and realize it’s important to small business,” Mercer said. “We wouldn’t be here without the support of our customers.”

Corinna Richardson is the features writer for The Facts. Contact her at 979-237-0150.

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