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Shoppers to see benefits Saturday

The Farmville Downtown Partnership is teaming up with the Farmville Area Chamber of Commerce and will be giving away $5 gift cards to local restaurants for the first 50 people that are out shopping Saturday. The event is part of Small Business Saturday, which is recognized nationwide.

John Burton

According to Farmville Downtown Partnership Program Manager John Burton, gift cards will be given out starting at 8 a.m. at the High Bridge Trail Plaza. “It’s a way that they can come out, get an early day of shopping and they can get a little bit of breakfast on us.”

He said downtown merchants will also be giving out special “shop small” canvas tote bags to shoppers.

“This is the first year that we’re teaming up together in this joint endeavor to try to encourage people to support our small locally-owned businesses,” Burton said regarding the two organizations working together.

“As we start shopping for the holidays, it is helpful to remember that if we want our town to prosper and grow with more local options, we should shop with local merchants first,” said Farmville Downtown Partnership President Sheri McGuire.

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, since 1995 small businesses have generated 64 percent of new jobs and paid 44 percent of the total U.S. private payroll.

“When we shop small — spending our money at locally-owned small businesses within our neighborhoods and towns — we help create two out of three net new local jobs,” officials said in a press release. “…Compared to chain stores, locally-owned businesses recycle a much larger share of their revenue back into the local economy, enriching the whole community, which means more money for local police and fire departments as well as schools and other community- supported infrastructure and services.”