BANGOR, Maine — With leftovers in the fridge and Black Friday shopping to do, this weekend is a busy time for Mainers. Just a few hours after cutting that last piece of pie, stores opened their doors for shoppers trying to get a head start on their Christmas list
But if waiting in long lines or getting up early to cash in on those doorbuster sales isn't for you, don't worry. Small Business Saturday is another chance to save money and support the local economy.
The marketing idea was created by American Express nine years ago. The day gives a chance for local stores and shops to promote themselves to the community and show that the 'little guys' are vital to towns and cities.
“If you combine all the small business it makes up a good piece of our local economy," Ellsworth City Manager David Cole said.
Cole also said that Ellsworth is one of the fastest-growing cities in Maine, with growth coming from small businesses setting up shop in the city's downtown shopping area. Small business owners are also the people you see in town every day, making it easy to connect and build relationships.
“They’re the faces you recognize, and they drive our economy," Cole added. "Small business is the face of Main Street and the commercial neighborhoods in a city like Ellsworth.”
Small Business Saturday isn't just an important day for the holiday season, but stores need the day to draw in new customers.
“It's important to get some new customers on small business Saturday that are likely going to stick around after the first of the year and the holidays,” Alison Lane of the Small Business Development Center in Bangor said.
Lane mentioned that small businesses in Bangor have been doing great this year. A big reason for that is community members realizing that the money they spend in small stores stays in the area.
“Consumers are really picking up the fact that they can help contribute to the economy by shopping small," Lane added.
27 small businesses in Bangor will be offering special deals and discounts on Saturday. Accents Furnishings is getting ready for the busy holiday season by offering discounts on Christmas ornaments.
“I think a lot of the small businesses downtown work together, and they understand when we work together, we all benefit," Alicia Tozier Manager of Accents said.