Small business shopping gives gifts a personal touch

Ben Peterson of Chippers906, in hat, showcases some of his store’s products to a customer on Saturday at the Westwood Mall for the Thanksgiving Market. The market helped encourage shoppers this holiday season to shop local and support small business. (Journal photo by Dreyma Beronja)



Journal Staff Writer

MARQUETTE — Many shoppers chose to shop locally and support small businesses over the weekend while doing their holiday shopping.

Over a dozen vendors were at the Westwood Mall on Friday and Saturday for the Thanksgiving Market. The two-day event was put on for small businesses to sell their local product to shoppers on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday.

Tonii Jackson, owner of Honee Pebbles, creates one-of-a-kind handmade jewelry pieces — specializing in natural stone and hypoallergenic metals.

Jackson runs the winter markets at the Westwood Mall, including the Thanksgiving Market that happened over the weekend.

She said shopping local and small feels “more beneficial” to the community.

“People are putting their own hardwood and time into their creations and it’s made with love and not made by a robot or made cheaply,” Jackson said. “Most of the things you find (from) small businesses are made really well.”

She used the example of a pair of mittens that were purchased years ago from a craft show that she still wears.

Ben Peterson, who runs Chippers906, was another local small business at the market over the weekend. Chippers906 creates and distributes flavored waffle chips, which makes for a “great stocking stuffer,” according to Peterson.

He said shopping on Saturday was slower than the previous day due to the holiday but vendors and shoppers were still happy to be out.

“Everybody’s got a happy look on their face and they’re happy the mall is doing more activities,” Peterson said.

When asked about shopping local versus at a box store, Peterson said he prefers the “hand-crafted touch and personalness” of a product made locally.

“If individuals aren’t able to produce things and sell to their local community and everything is brought in from a larger company, the locals we live next to and share everything with will start to lose more and more income and everything will be reliant on these larger corporations to handle everything,” he said.

Shoppers today for Cyber Monday will still have local options to choose from.

Some stores participating include:

≤ Donckers, the 126-year-old candy shop and restaurant on West Washington Street, has a 20% off coupon for shoppers to use at checkout for their order.

≤ The Upper Peninsula Supply Co., also located on West Washington, has a 20% off coupon for Cyber Monday. The store has been celebrating the U.P. since 2008, selling products featuring the U.P., Great Lakes and the nature and wildlife in the area.

≤ Beth Millner Jewelry, on Washington Street, has a storewide 50% off coupon that ends today.

Shoppers can see if their favorite local store is participating in Cyber Monday by going online to the store’s website.

Dreyma Beronja can be reached at 906-228-2500 ext. 548. Their email address is dberonj@miningjournal.net.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper *

Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today