Article and photo (Marcia’s Sweet Shop and Tootsie’s Ice Cream, Wrentham, Mass. VisitingNewEngland.com)
We, at VisitingNewEngland.com, decided to start this blog to inform readers of the many high quality, locally owned businesses in the New England states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. We are, ultimately, huge proponents of quality locally-owned businesses, part of which derives from warm memories of “back in the day” downtown shopping and the other part that knows that “small business” is a lifeline to economic prosperity in our country.
Once upon a time, local businesses were a way of life — the five and dime, the country store, the local grocery, and the clothing shop where you were greeted by a smile and one-on-one customer service. Locally-owned stores became a part of the neighborhood, with store owners prideful of what they had to offer and building relationships with the customer.
Those stores do exist today in New England, but not the way it used to be. Our downtowns have suffered as a result of the big box stores. Still, innovative and determined downtown business owners find ways to keep afloat. We believe that both models of business can coexist, but we clearly have a preference for championing the local business owner. From a financial standpoint, supporting local business makes a lot of sense: money that is spent in the community tends to stay in the community. In this special section of VisitingNewEngland.com, we celebrate your strong efforts and determination to be an integral part of your community!
We indeed feel the efforts small business owners make and the reasons they are in business — to sell something they believe in, place the customer first, and to earn money to take care of their own families — deserve your attention. On a regular basis, we will be recommending locally-owned stores, as well as inviting those independent business owners to tell us their stories. Consider this blog your small-town, Main St., downtown shopping periodical! Of course, you don’t have to do business on Main St; we are interested in small New England businesses that provide valuable services in every New England neighborhood!
We would also love to hear from you — what are some of your favorite locally-owned stores? Together — VisitingNewEngland.com, businesses owners and our readership — we hope to bring more attention to these hard-working business owners and their great locally-owned businesses!
Thank-you, small business owners from New England. We appreciate your efforts, and hope to tell your story soon!