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Valley News Dispatch

New Kensington aims to showcase itself on Small Business Saturday

| Friday, Nov. 24, 2017, 1:33 p.m.
Apothecary Soap Co.  on Fifth Avenue at Ninth Street in New Kensington is one of the downtown shops participating in Sip & Sweets, for Small Business Saturday.
Louis B. Ruediger | Tribune-Review
Apothecary Soap Co. on Fifth Avenue at Ninth Street in New Kensington is one of the downtown shops participating in Sip & Sweets, for Small Business Saturday.

A group of small businesses in New Kensington hopes to bring Christmas shoppers downtown today for Small Business Saturday, and they're offering cookies and hot chocolate to sweeten the deals.

Organizer Autumn Walker of the Apothecary Soap Co. has dubbed the event “Sips & Sweets,” and Walker said sugary confections and drinks aren't the only reasons to shop downtown.

“We chose Small Business Saturday as the perfect day for the Sips & Sweets event in order to showcase our local small businesses. By joining forces with American Express and other small businesses across the nation, we hope to show locals that you don't have to shop in the big box stores to get amazing products and the most unique gifts this holiday season,” Walker said.

Participating businesses can be found along Fourth Avenue from Dan Rowe Agency & A Wild Heart Boutique on the corner of Seventh Street, up to Arnold Feed and Garden Center near the corner at 11th Street, along Fifth Avenue from Modfinish and Knead Community Cafe down to Kafa Buna coffee house at the corner of Eighth Street.

Small Business Saturday is held each year the weekend after Thanksgiving.

First observed in 2010, the so-called shopping holiday aims to bring shoppers to local small businesses for their holiday shopping with offers of deals similar to those featured by larger stores on the Black Friday shopping holiday.

Small Business Saturday is a registered trademark of American Express, the original sponsor of the event.

“We're looking forward to the local citizens and those outside the Valley coming out and joining us,” said Mary Bode, owner of Knead Community Cafe, a participating business. “It's a great opportunity for people who haven't visited us to stop in and find out what the cafe is all about. We're just trying to build up the positivity in New Kensington. It's been a hard a week for our community.”

Walker said each stop along the event route will feature a different locally made baked good and that several locations will offer cider, coffee and cocoa. Businesses also will offer product specials for shoppers.

“I am working with some of the business owners to help them line up some nice promotions and packages for the big day so there should be a lot to look forward to,” Walker said.

Marci Wiggins, owner of Tight and Tone Fitness, said shoppers should consider staying local as a way of continuing the progress the city has made in recent months towards revitalization.

“We're hoping that people come from the area to participate to remind them that we are there and of our commitment to our community and to the revitalization project as a whole. We're trying to get new Kensington back on the map and we hope people continue to support the small business owners in the area,” she said.

Matthew Medsger is a Tribune-Review staff writer.

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