WESTFIELD – Shopping small is a big deal.
Spending money in small, locally-owned businesses keeps the city’s economy moving forward and the Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce hopes local businesses and shoppers will get on board when Westfield Shops Small Nov. 29-30.
To encourage everyone to shop at small businesses that weekend, the Chamber developed a walking “board game.”
Sponsored by The Original Pennysaver, shoppers can get in the game by getting a game board, which will be printed in The Pennysaver on Nov. 21, and then go shopping. Shoppers will visit at least 10 participating merchants, who will mark their store on the game board, to be eligible for cash prizes. No purchase is necessary, and participants must be over 18 to win. There will be five drop-off locations for shoppers to leave their entry form.
Many of these businesses have been meeting to plan the Small Business Saturday event, including Westfield on Weekends.
“Westfield on Weekends is working with the Chamber to support Small Business Saturday. Their commitment to us is invaluable and we are happy to help with this great event,” said Amber Danahey, president of the WOW board.
Chamber Executive Director Kate Phelon said Small Business Saturday is not the national event it was in previous years.
“While American Express has changed their model this year to shop small every day, we decided to keep it on the historical Saturday after Thanksgiving,” said Phelon. “We are asking everyone to come out and shop in Westfield to support our local businesses on Nov. 29 and 30 and participate by playing the game the committee has designed.”
Phelon said she is very excited about the event.
“This is actually our first, true, organized event for Shop Small Saturday in Westfield,” said Phelon. “As the chamber executive, I have always wanted to plan a large, fun event for the community, but was always out of town on Small Business Saturday visiting family in upstate New York and couldn’t really plan an event. So, this is my first year organizing Westfield Shops Small with chamber members.”
Although the Shop Small movement has been in full effect for several years and is evolving, Phelon said it is still relevant to local businesses.
“This is still important, as we must keep the message alive about the importance of shopping and buying local to support our merchants and helping them to keep their brick and mortar stores open,” she said. “I know from my chamber members that some local people have never been into their businesses. We’re hoping consumers will embrace Westfield Shops Small to support these local businesses.”
Businesses can get “on board” by contacting the Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce to secure a game square by Oct. 1, 2019. Squares are limited to the first 40 businesses. Membership is not required to participate. The cost of a square is $25 cash or check or $30 credit card.
All proceeds collected will go towards cash prizes, advertising, and promotional costs. All businesses who participate will also be given a poster board size of the game board to display in their windows, sponsored by Staples.
Other businesses who have been on either the gameboard committee or marketing committee include: For K-9’s & Felines, George’s Jeweler’s, Shortstop Bar & Grill, Flowers by Webster, WOW, Mina’s Wine & Spirits, and Aflac.