Was at The Treehouse for a writers group this week. Saw a reference to the 3/50 project. Took me awhile to figure out what it was, but finally realized it was a movement to support locally owned businesses in the community. Nice!
What 3 locally owned businesses would you miss if they disappeared? Stop in & say hello; pick up some necessities rather than running to the Mega Chain, or buy something that brings a smile. “Locally owned” can be Storefront Retailers, who sell physical products; Other Brick & Mortar businesses, like restaurants or salons; and Franchises, like Hallmark, or Ace Hardware, that are independently owned but carry a brand/chain name.
The 50 is that if 50% of the employed population spent $50 a month in a locally owned business, over $42 billion would be generated in revenue. That figure apparently comes from a 2009 report from the US Labor Department.
And the other fun fact is that for every $100 spent at a local business, $68 is returned to the community in the form of taxes, payroll, etc. If it’s a national chain, only 43%. Buying online brings nothing back to the community. Gulp.
I thought about my 3, and it’s pretty sad that I am having a hard time thinking of local businesses I go to a lot. I know the Treehouse would be one, and I love the Ace Hardware in Wilmington VT. There’s one in Westmont; think I’ll go there instead of Lowe’s next time I need some hardware! For the third. Hm. I can think of a lot of places I’d be sad to hear went away, but not really ones I frequent. So I guess that means I’d better start, eh?
1. Abbey Road — Music store across from the Treehouse. Some nights they play jazz into the street over the PA. Cool. I don’t really buy music anymore, but I should at least stop in, I think.
2. Ritz Theater — in Westmont. They had financial trouble a few years ago but incorporated as a non-profit and now receive grant funding. 2010 is the 25th anniversary season and the builiding is on the National Register of Historic Places. Great little bit of history. I volunteered here as an usher when I was in middle school, but haven’t been back in years. Ooh and look, they’re showing The Producers and Spamalot this season! Guess I’ll get tickets; would hate to see this old theater go the route of the Harwan. (100-year-old theater in Mt. Ephraim, torn down to build a Walgreens. Horrifying.)
3. I’ll say Lite-N-Up and John’s Friendly Market, both on Station Ave in Haddon Heights. John is in his 80s, and his “office” is a cushy desk chair in the middle of the canned goods aisle. He’s there every day. Great hoagies & deli. Lite-N-Up is owned by friends of the family, home made water ice and ice cream. Where I discovered chocolate covered bananas!
Ok there are my three, plus the Treehouse! Might as well add the Bishop’s Collar & the Ugly Moose, two places in Philly I like but haven’t been in ages. Hm, and now I’m thinking of the Philadelphia Magic Gardens, Woolplay, the Pop Shop, Philadelphia Java Company, Chapter House….good to know there are more local places I frequent than I thought.
What are your three? 🙂 The 3/50 Project