After you stuff yourself to your brim with food on Thursday and shop the big box stores on Friday, don’t forget to show your city’s small businesses some love on Saturday. Small business Saturday is the little guys’ revolt against Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and your chance to give back to your community. An article on “Why You Need to Support Small Businesses” from Nicole Leinbach-Reyhle of Forbes said ” The Small Business Administration identified that there are more than 28.2 million businesses operating in the United States as of March 2014, with about 63% of new jobs being created from small businesses between 1993 and mid 2013. Of these 28.2 million businesses, most are “self-employed” – making up about 3/4 of the U.S.’s total businesses.” Small businesses are an important part of our economy. Plus, all college towns have character, and Mankato is no exception. We’re surrounded by locally owned coffee shops, clothing stores, bakeries, and so much more. So this Saturday, show the community that has taken you in during your college years some love and explore your surroundings.
For everyone who loves coffee (which is most, considering sleep isn’t something we see a lot of in college), you have a huge selection of places to go. Since it can be tiring shopping all day, stop into the Coffee Hag for one of their magical lattes or a monster cookie that’s so good it will bring a tear to your eye. The Curiosi-Tea shop will have free tea samples all day, 10% off select items, live music from 1-2, a free canvas tote with purchase of $10 in loose leaf tea or accessories, and a free single teabag with every $10 purchase. Don’t forget about the Fillin Station across from the Book Exchange on Front Street. Or, if you’re not one for coffee or tea, stop by Friesens for some soup or a sweet treat.
If you need a present for a parent or something to spice up the walls of your dorm/apartment/house, local artists will be on display in various places downtown. Twin Rivers Council for the Arts is going to be having a fair where they’re showcasing 15 local artists, and the 410 gallery also has affordable art from local artists plus some students! If you want some handmade gifts or furniture, there’s no shortage of it at Salvage Sisters. They’re offering a gift basket worth $100 and free totes to the first 25 customers who visit them.
Who doesn’t love some new clothes, right? Especially now with all of the annoying cold weather, it’s completely acceptable to treat yourself to a cute and comfortable sweater or scarf. One brand new clothing store in Mankato is called BlackBlue and it has men’s and women’s clothing (plus a chance to win a $100 gift card). Gallery 512 Boutique has lots of cute clothes and accessories to peruse, along with Semblance Boutique. If you’re tight on cash you can also check out Encore Consignment boutique downtown, plus MRCI and Again thrift shops near the mall on top of the hill.
The specials mentioned are just a couple that have been promoted through Facebook. In order to find the deals spread throughout the stores, you’ll have to get out and explore!
City Center is doing a passport program this year, you pick up a “passport” from any participating business and then get stamps from 10 different places. Once you complete the passport you can enter it into a raffle of your choice. You can also get a $5 gift card from Pub 500 once you get 5 stamps and $2 off the purchase of a ticket to The Snow Queen from Merely Players Community Theatre when you present a receipt from a City Center Small Business received on November 26.
Here are some other small business that weren’t mentioned specifically but are also taking part in Small Business Saturday:
- The Dork Den
- The Children’s Museum Gift Shop
- The Jewelry Bench by Mary
- Secret Knots Art Supply
- Arizona Olive Oil Co
- Whimsy & Weathered
- Bent River Outfitter
- WYSIWYG Juice Co.
- WineCafe Bar
- Decadent Desserts
- Tune Town
And so many others! Check out the City Center website for a complete list.
The specials mentioned are just a couple that have been marketed through Facebook. In order to find the deals throughout the stores, you’ll have to get out and explore!