Bloomington Promotes Local Shopping On Black Friday

Local businesses are encouraging shoppers to come to their stores instead of major retailers, but they will not have the same long hours or big sales.

Landlocked

Photo: Torrie Cope/WFIU News

Landlocked music store in Bloomington promotes Plaid Friday, an effort to get people to shop local, in its window display.

A coalition of local business in Bloomington are hoping shoppers will choose local stores over large chains as they hit the streets early Friday morning for Black Friday bargain.

While some shoppers line up overnight on Black Friday hoping to snag special deals on laptops and flat screens, local businesses are counting on shoppers who want to avoid the chaos of the busiest shopping day of the year and participate in what they call Plaid Friday, a local alternative to Black Friday.

Una Winterman, director of Local First Indiana, the group that is organizing the event, says Plaid Friday is meant to bring a wide range of people together to support businesses in the community. This is Bloomington’s first year participating, but she says local businesses are excited.

“It seems like it’s really resonating with a lot of our local businesses, and we even took posters around to some of the businesses that aren’t members of Local First Indiana but who are local, and we are inviting them to participate as well,” Winterman says.

In addition to Plaid Friday, Macey Dale of Andrew Davis says they are also participating in an event sponsored by American Express that gives money back to customers that shop at local businesses.

“Absolutely, I think anything that puts dollars back into our community is definitely the right way to go and hopefully it spawns more movements in the future,” he says.

But many local stores are not offering the same deals as larger retailers. David Nichoalds of Tivoli Jewelry says he will not be opening overnight.

“We’re going to be here that’s the special thing that we do, because we are a small independent store, operation things like this we normally just maintain our regular hours,” he says.

Nichoalds says he will not be offering any major discounts.

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