Opinion

Shop locally and everyone benefits

The Friday after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, marks the traditional beginning of the Christmas holiday shopping season and is usually one of the busiest shopping days of the year. And despite the current economic downturn, retailers are hoping that this year will be not different from years past.

But the economic downturn has impacted consumers, many of whom may find themselves with less money to spend this holiday season. So it’s important that they keep one thing in mind when deciding where to purchase their holiday gifts — shop locally.

Shopping locally benefits everyone — the local businesses, our communities, local non-profits and the people who call Marysville and Arlington home. Local businesses are an important and integral part of our communities and they depend on our support, especially in these challenging economic times.

Local businesses create local jobs and employ our friends and neighbors. If our local businesses can’t survive, those local jobs will disappear.

Local businesses also make significant contributions to our communities. They sponsor annual events like the Marysville Strawberry Festival and Arlington’s Fourth of July celebration. They also provide significant support to local nonprofit organizations and youth sporting leagues. Almost everything that happens in our communities has some type of support from the local business community. If our local businesses fail, the support they provide may no longer be available.

Local business owners, managers and employees also take an active role in the many service organizations that do such great work in our communities. Kiwanis, Rotary and other organizations all benefit from the generosity of time and money from our local businesses.

Local businesses also generate tax revenues that are critical to the cities of Arlington and Marysville. Those tax revenues help pay for such services such as police, roads, parks and recreation and more. We’ve seen the negative impacts of the faltering economy on local budgets such as King and Snohomish counties which face cuts in many services. By supporting our local businesses, hopefully our communities won’t be looking at making similar cuts.

As individuals, we can save time and gas by shopping locally. And, many of our local stores offer local products and services not available anywhere else.

When you do you holiday shopping this year, try and do as much of it as you can locally. You will be supporting our local businesses and our communities.

To contact a member of The Marysville Globe/Arlington Times editorial board — Stuart Chernis or Scott Frank — e-mail forum@marysvilleglobe.com.

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