In a collaborative effort to boost the local economy and promote community support, the City of Airdrie has partnered with the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce to launch the ‘Shop Airdrie First’ campaign this holiday season.
Allison Anhorn, owner of ZIVA & EM Boutique, says small businesses provide a personalized shopping experience big box or online stores can’t provide.
“Shopping in small shops offers better customer service,” says Anhorn, whose clothing boutique has been open since 2018.
“You’re not just supporting a business; you’re assisting someone who lives in Airdrie, pays the same taxes, and cares about the city you live in.”
Claudette Kirkwood, owner of Rocket Fizz, a store specializing in soda, candy and quirky gift items, echoes the sentiment.
“Shopping locally keeps locals employed and buys homes locally. It means money is spent at other local businesses because we keep locals employed,” says Kirkwood.
“We sponsor local events and charities, meaning we then give back to the same community that shops and keeps us open. We use local businesses to keep us going, for example we use a local airdrie business to make our clothing, we hire a local accounting firm, essentially we reinvest in the local community both directly and indirectly.”
In 2022, Stats Canada says 96 percent of businesses in Airdrie were small businesses.
That’s a number, Airdrie Economic Development Officer Tara Levick, says reinforces the idea that supporting local businesses directly contributes to Airdrie’s economic resilience.
“It’s just a reminder to think about Airdrie first, think about if our community has the product or service you are looking for for sale and just support close to home instead of going out to the big box stores or outside of our community,” says Levick.