Schenectady, N.Y. – Two local business organizations are working together for the sixth straight year to drive community awareness of Small Business Saturday and to kick off the holiday shopping season for Schenectady’s independent businesses. In 2019, the big day is Saturday, November 30, marking the 10th year of the popular national promotion. The Downtown Schenectady Improvement Corporation (DSIC) and Capital Region Chamber held a press conference with business owners and elected officials on Tuesday, November 26 on the patio of Johnny’s Restaurant in downtown to announce participants and activities for Small Business Saturday in Schenectady and to encourage the community to shop small.
“Year after year, our local businesses are definitely seeing the positive influence of Small Business Saturday,” said Jim Salengo, Executive Director of the DSIC. “We invite shoppers from all over the greater Capital Region to discover the unique treasures and one-of-a-kind experiences offered by Schenectady’s many new and well-established independent businesses.”
Mark Eagan, President & CEO of the Capital Region Chamber, said, “Small Business Saturday puts a spotlight on the importance of shopping locally when possible. The businesses participating in our Small Business Saturday Schenectady partnership will have items on hand to celebrate with their customers.”
“Small Business Saturday stresses the importance of local businesses on our City’s overall success,” said Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy. “Schenectady has always had a tremendous sense of community, so I encourage everyone to come out and support the many independent businesses that make Schenectady a wonderful place to live, work and visit.”
Caroline Bardwell, owner of The Schenectady Trading Company at 609 Union Street, said, “I believe there is no better time than the present to show how commerce can truly build community in Schenectady. Small Business Saturday is a great example of the power behind shopping local. I am thrilled to join the other small businesses downtown and offer a shop where money spent truly makes a difference.”
In 2010, American Express founded Small Business Saturday to help independent businesses with their most pressing need – getting more customers. The single day has grown into a powerful annual movement with impressive results. According to American Express, in 2018 more than 7,500 small businesses and organizations signed up to be Neighborhood Champions across all 50 states. Also in 2018, an estimated 104 million people went out to shop at small independent businesses, and total spending among U.S. consumers who shopped at independent brick-and-mortar stores on Small Business Saturday reached a record $17.8 billion. Since Small Business Saturday started, U.S. customers have reported spending an estimated total of $103 billion at independent retailers and restaurants — that’s $103 billion over nine days alone.
A selection of 25 local businesses in Schenectady have created in-store specials, drawings, giveaways and more specifically for the DSIC/Capital Region Chamber’s Small Business Saturday Schenectady promotion. For a list of specials, as well as more information on Schenectady’s local businesses and the nationwide Small Business Saturday promotion, visit www.downtownschenectady.org, www.capitalregionchamber.com and www.shopsmall.org.
Jim Salengo, Downtown Schenectady Improvement Corporation, 518-377-9430
Jennifer Sims, Capital Region Chamber, 518-431-1418