Shopping at home worth your time this holiday season

It starts earlier every year!
The deluge of holiday promotions and retail advertising geared toward Christmas shoppers is in full force now, a month before friends and family begin gathering around the tree to exchange gifts and well wishes. It used to be that turkey with all the trimmings were served before that process took center stage, but those days are long gone.
Now Black Friday rings the bell as the official start of the Christmas shopping season, followed by the online Cyber Monday phenomenon. Indeed, the retail landscape has changed dramatically in recent years.
One tradition that will always be part of my routine is shopping local, whenever possible. Area retailers are working harder than ever these days to carry gift items that appeal to all the names on my list.
Here are just a few of the known benefits of what shopping local can mean to your community:
• More of the money spent locally stays local. According to the Retail Merchants Association, 45 cents out of every dollar gets reinvested in the local community.
• Shopping locally creates jobs. Small businesses are the number one employer in North America, so every job created is a plus for a community.
• Shopping locally helps keep taxes lower. The more people working and more businesses in a community to form a tax base, the better financially situated a community will be. Owners and employees live in the area, so their paychecks are also being spent in the community.
• Community uniqueness is enhanced. Shopping locally can display what is special about a community.
• Shopping locally generally provides a more personalized shopping experience. Customer service is the hallmark of small business, especially since small business employees often know more about the products they sell.
• Local businesses support area organizations. Charities, arts organizations, school events and local sports all benefit from local business sponsorship throughout the year.
Good selection, great deals and hometown service you simply can’t put a price tag on are all available here in Aurora.
Kurt Johnson

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