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Small Business Saturday to support local shops

By Callie Furnas, For The Miami Student

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become highly anticipated Thanksgiving traditions. In recent years, though, local businesses across the nation have adopted the Saturday after Thanksgiving as their own business opportunity.

This Saturday, known to many local business owners as "Small Business Saturday" has gained momentum over the past three years. It is a day where shopping small and shopping locally is promoted and encouraged across the country.

On Saturday, Nov. 29, the Oxford Chamber of Commerce will hold their version of Small Business Saturday campaign Uptown.

The day is held as part of the November campaign the Chamber of Commerce has dubbed "Shop Small, Shop Local, Shop Oxford."

"We had it last year and did really well with it," Cheri Corcoran, manager of The Apple Tree said of Small Business Saturday. "The locals and everybody came out that day and supported us."

In 2010, American Express founded Small Business Saturday. Their goal was to help local small businesses with one thing they struggle most with: attracting more customers.

American Express chose the Saturday after Thanksgiving every year to hold the event - the day after Black Friday.

In 2011, Small Business Saturday became official when mayors, governors and senators across the country and even President Barack Obama announced support.

According to the American Express website for Small Business Saturday, an estimated $5.5 billion were spent at small independent businesses on Small Business Saturday in 2012. The single day has grown into a powerful movement, and more people are taking part than ever before.

The Oxford Chamber of Commerce has reached out to many local businesses in Oxford and gotten them on board with the campaign.

Some of the businesses involved are The Apple Tree, Lane and Kate, Juniper, Paisley On High, Bluetique, Walker's Footwear & Apparel, Luna Blu Salon, Spa & Galleria, Wild Berry andmany more.

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Many of the small businesses will offer discounts and deals on this day.

According to Dodi Wolke, owner of Paisley On High, they will be offering some deals and discounts this year such as $2 off slippers, 20 percent off ornaments and more.

Wolke explained that this day means a lot more to local business owners than most people think. It represents the idea of shopping locally that is essential to the success of small businesses.

"It's my livelihood," Wolke said. "I always try to shop in Oxford for whatever I can, if you own a business in Oxford it is your livelihood. Shopping locally is very important."