South End Shops Make "Small Business Saturday" Pitch
CHARLOTTE, NC - In South End, people gathered for the neighborhood's first annual tree lighting. It's the end of a long day's effort to attract people to the community.
On this "Small Business Saturday," South End offered over 70 local places to shop. Getting people here - is the hard part.
"At a mall you've got everything right there, easy to get to. So it is a little more challenging, so that's why we're trying to make it a little more fun, a little bit easier," explains Ted Boyd, with Charlotte Center City Partners.
He touts convenience and avoiding the big crowds.
"There's not a lot of hassle. You can take your time, find something that's unique," he says.
For South End business owner Trudy Green, it's about the personal service.
"When people come through the door, you recognize 'em. You greet 'em by their first name. You know what they like," Green explains.
She says while finding unique products, the money also stays in the community.
"I think people really just shop and they don't really think about where the money's going," she says.
They say another advantage of shopping locally is being able to walk or bike to your favorite stores.
"South End's very walkable. There's not many places that have the light rail that you could get off at four different stops and still have shopping within a five minute walk," Boyd says.
Back at tonight's tree lighting, locals hope their efforts will get more people to come through these doors.
"People have favorite little shops and boutiques and they have to realize if they don't support 'em they're not going to be there," Green says.