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'Mission 3/65' aims to help small businesses in Portland

Portland Downtown and Portland Buy Local want people to pick three businesses and spend $65 to help keep doors open.

PORTLAND, Maine — As a way to help small businesses, Portland Downtown along with Portland Buy Local have launched an initiative shop locally.

"Our downtown business community and our small business community, in general, is struggling. We can all help by taking small bites," Portland Downtown Executive Director Cary Tyson said.

It's called 'Mission 3/65.' The organizations want people to pick three small local businesses and spend $65.

"With small business, the dollar goes further and it stays in your community. For every dollar you spend, 67-cents stays in the local community," Tyson said.

"If everyone in Cumberland County shifted their spending just 10 percent to local businesses, it would generate $127 million worth of additional economic activity," Portland Buy Local Executive Director Mary Alice Scott said.

The initiative launched on December 1. The organizations say so far they've seen a great turnout.

"It's been so exciting to see the enthusiasm. It's a simple ask to identify three businesses. It's a concrete thing people can do and they know it will make a difference for those businesses," Scott said.

"If you can't afford $65 we understand that but pick an amount you can afford," Tyson said.

Many small businesses have upgraded their websites to make it easier for people to shop during the pandemic.

"So many of our small and downtown retailers are all offering everything from curbside delivery to home pick-up to all sorts of creative approaches," Tyson said.

All in an effort to keep small businesses open.

For a list of Maine businesses, click here.

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