As you may know, November 28th is Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday is an American shopping holiday to promote local businesses. Most of us have participated in Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but we may have not yet participated in Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday is for small businesses, not large big-box retail and e-commerce stores.
American Express created Small Business Saturday to support small businesses that keep our nation running. This holiday was created in 2010 and became popular in 2013 when American Express rewarded customers $10 of credit when they spent $10 or more at a small business.
This year, we will hopefully see close to 200 million people shop local on this holiday, which would be roughly 15 billion dollars spent at these small businesses.
This year is unlike any other in our lifetimes. We have seen the economy crash, unemployment rates skyrocket, small businesses damaged by riots, and much more. Our mission here at City Personnel is to help our audience understand the importance of shopping locally. For this year’s 10th Anniversary of Small Business Saturday, we visited local small businesses in our area and got to know them a little better ourselves.
With new COVID-19 regulations being introduced into Rhode Island, we listed local businesses that allow for in-store and online purchasing.
If you are able to purchase and support these businesses online, please do so. You can shop in your pjs all while keeping yourself and the staff of these amazing companies safe!
Sin is a locally owned bakery located on Westminster Street in Providence, RI. With our office being located on Broadway, we are just walking distance away from grabbing their delicious treats!
Our office is no stranger to Sin as we have visited them on several occasions for their ‘sin-tastic’ treats! Not only is Sin a bakery, coffee shop, dessert bar, and cake shop, but in the evening it turns into a bar where you can enjoy some great signature drinks!
Right when you enter Sin, you will get an aroma of yummy muffins and delicious cakes. Don’t miss out on visiting one of City Personnel’s favorite places to go! If you are a fan of chocolate, we highly recommend their expresso cake when you stop in.
Their website says it best, “Go ahead and Sin…Eat wicked, never feel guilty.” Check out our local favorite at eatwicked.com.
Next up on our list is unlike any other of the featured businesses. This family-owned business does not actually have a store-front, but can be bought from other locally owned businesses, as well as places like Target, Barnes & Noble, Walmart and Amazon. But this is still a small business we want to support!
Started in the Nathanson’s family home, over 15 years ago, the game was initially created for just some family fun but soon grew into something even more special. Bananagrams is similar to Scrabble, however there is no board, meaning you can play nearly anywhere. After Bananagrams grew in popularity, the Nathanson’s expanded their business and now have over 10 exciting and educational games in their collection!
Bananagrams is one of our favorite companies to support during the holidays because they are local to Providence, family-owned, and their games will “drive you bananas”! If you aren’t familiar with Bananagrams, check them out! They have some fantastic games that are fun for the whole family
Frog & Toad
Frog & Toad has been featured a few times in our blogs previously because we are such a big fan of theirs! Frog & Toad have been bringing to Providence funny, locally influenced clothing for the last 19 years! They sell sweaters, jewelry, handbags, throw rugs, graphic tees, and much more.
Unfortunately with COVID-19 hitting local businesses hard this year, Frog & Toad are no longer at their storefront location.
That being said, you can still purchase all their products online!
Whether you are looking for a Providence Skyline Hoodie inspired by the Patagonia logo or looking for their famous “Knock it Off” t-shirt, they have something for everyone. Make sure to start ordering soon for the holidays!
We love supporting businesses that give back to the community, and Saltwater Living does precisely that. Not only do they provide great quality products, but they also support a great cause. 5% of their gross proceeds from their Apres Beach Collection get donated to Clean Ocean Access, which protects the Aquidneck Island Shoreline.
This boutique is not only inspired by the ocean, but also is located on the ocean as it has been a staple of Bowen’s Wharf in downtown Newport for the last several years. They offer an abundance of products and gifts including beauty, bath, fragrance, home and life, hair, body, and loungewear. Basically, anything needed to enhance your self-care and home!
So, although we may not be visiting the beach anytime soon, bring a little bit of the Saltwater Living to your home and others this holiday season!
Dips Dips opened up last year as a catering company. Each week, Dips Dips travels around the state and sets up their catering service at local bars, breweries, and events. We were lucky to visit them when they catered for The Tiny Bar in Providence.
Unfortunately, we did have to sit outside at the Tiny Bar in 30-degree weather, but it was well worth it. Dips Dips had some of the best tasting appetizers we have ever tasted. Their pizza appetizer was undoubtedly the most flavorful and filling pizza we have ever seen. If you have a chance to visit their pop-up food service, make sure to have an empty stomach! Everything is too good to pass up.
Dips Dips customer service and food were above expectations! If you are ever in need of catering for a party, visit Dips Dips for their catering service! P.S. They can cater for holidays!
Are you looking to find furniture, home furnishings, or gifts at an affordable price for the holidays? Homestyle is the place to visit! Homestyle has been opened since 2007. Since then, they have received many awards including, “Best of the New” by Boston Globe Magazine, R.I. Monthly’s “Best of Rhode Island – Home Accessories,” and Best of New England Travel.
Homestyle has expanded over the years and now offers many other gifts including calendars, cards, bath and body, candles, baby toys, and much more. If you are in the area and need accessories for your home, please visit Homestyle!
Federal Hill Wine & Spirits
We all know the popularity of liquor stores during the holiday season. In fact, the top 5 busiest days for liquor stores include 4 days in December. With a plethora of locally-owned liquor stores, it was tough to decide which ones we would feature in our post. We were looking for a liquor store that was not only providing friendly customer service, but also one that had taken steps to ensure customer satisfaction and safety during these times. One local liquor store went above and beyond, and that was Federal Hill Wine & Spirits.
Federal Hill Wine & Spirits has all the options for the holiday season. If you want a bottle of wine or a seasonal beer, they have many great options for you! If you like beer from local breweries, we counted at least 30 different kinds! With a wide variety of selections, this liquor store is the go-to in the Providence area.
We also wanted to feature Federal Hill Wine & Spirits because they were one of the only liquor stores in the area that had a website. On their website, you will be able to sift through their specials, events, and types of alcohol they have. If you are looking to purchase liquor for the holidays, visit Federal Hill Wine & Spirits.
Modern Love & Queen of Hearts
It started with Queen of Hearts being established 14 years ago. This fashion boutique was opened in the heart of the arts district in Providence, RI. After years of success there, they expanded and opened up Modern Love right next door.
The owner, Karen Beebe, decided to demolish a wall that separated the two businesses, creating one large store. Making it a one-stop-shop for the holiday season! These stores include jewelry, dresses, accessories, bath & body, and everything fashion. If you are looking to shop for local fashion for the holidays, check out these unique stores! They do provide delivery around Providence, gift wrapping, and curbside pickup.
First off, we cannot say enough great things about Craftland. When we first arrived at the store, we were welcomed by the owner, employees, and a friendly dog! Craftland was first opened in 2002 as a Holiday Pop-Up shop. After a few years of success, they were able to expand to a year-round retail shop. What we love most about Craftland is that they love working with the local creative community.
Craftland currently works with over 100 artists that create clothing, accessories, artwork, houseware, toys, prints, and much more. “Every winter, they not only re-design the store for the holiday season, but they also add a handful of new local artists to design for them. When we were visiting, they were already in the process of this holiday seasons’ transformation!
The best part about Craftland is that almost all their products are online, ready to purchase, hand-made, and locally created. Thanks to Providence, you can walk around Westminster Street on Saturdays from 10 am – 6 pm and enjoy shopping without having to worry about traffic! Make sure to stop by Craftland on Saturday to meet some of the local artists they work with.
Blush Bakeshop is a plant-based bakery owned by Samantha Chamberlain, who graduated from Johnson and Wales University Pastry Arts Program. This bakery has become a big hit on Atwells Ave because it uses all-natural, organic, and local ingredients!
Sometimes you can see Blush Bakeshop pop-up shops when there is an event in-town. However, due to fewer events going on, you can visit Blush Bakeshop at their storefront!
Once you walk into Blush Bakeshop, you will feel right at home. With two couches and many seats, you will be able to relax while enjoying your favorite pastries. If you are looking to order cake or dessert for the holidays, Blush Bakeshop does that too!
Even if you are unable to visit any of these places on Small Business Saturday, that doesn’t mean you can’t support these fantastic local businesses year-round! When you are shopping for holiday gifts, remember to shop local if you can! To see photos of us visiting these stores, check out our gallery!