Northern Hills residents encouraged to shop local

In communities throughout the Northern Hills, residents are encouraged to shop local throughout the holiday season and especially on Small Business Saturday, Nov. 30. Shoppers at Just for Looks Boutique in Sturgis got an early start on holiday shopping Tuesday. Pioneer photo by Deb Holland 

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Retailers throughout the Northern Hills are rolling out the red-carpet encouraging people to shop local this holiday season.

Local businesses in Spearfish are gearing up for the biggest small business shopping day of the year with a plethora of events aimed at celebrating Small Business Saturday on Nov. 30.

“We all know that the money that you spend here, stays here,” said Melissa Barth, executive director of the Spearfish Chamber of Commerce. “If we don’t shop local, then they can’t keep their stores open, they can’t pay their employees, those employees can’t go grocery shopping and buy gas and go out to eat and in turn buy presents for their kids. It is a whole circle.”

In Sturgis, the chamber of commerce and local businesses have given residents the 90% challenge. 

“We’re challenging residents to do at least 90% of their holiday shopping in Sturgis this year,” said Sturgis Chamber of Commerce & Visitor’s Bureau Executive Director Veronica Grosek.

Kami Grubl, owner of Just For Looks Boutique in Sturgis and President of the Sturgis Area Chamber of Commerce, agrees saying people need to think outside the box and embrace the challenge.

“It is absolutely doable. There is something for everyone here in town,” she said.

When money gets put back into the local economy, it strengthens a community, Grubl said.

It’s very important to do as much shopping local as possible, said Lead City Administrator Mike Stahl.

“Not only does it provide the sales tax necessary to run the city, but it keeps local people employed,” he said. “It helps our community in so many ways, it strengthens it.”

Michelle Evans of Cowboys Too Fine Western Apparel in Belle Fourche focuses on making her business a Christmas shopping destination. 

“We have ‘Come to Christmas in Belle Fourche’ during every Saturday of the holiday season,” Evans said. “The town comes alive with horse-drawn wagon rides, Christmas movies at a local church and of course, Santa! While the kids are watching movies, visitors can go shopping or enjoy a quiet meal at a local restaurant.”

Belle Fourche has weathered many changes economically but remains consistent in local businesses sponsoring youth sports teams, charities, school activities, Roundup, and more, Stacey Raisanen, Center of the Nation Business Association president, said.

“When you shop local, you are helping your friends and neighbors stay in business,” Raisanen said. “When tax dollars are kept in town, it enables better parks and recreation as well for our citizens.”

The South Dakota Retailers Association is encouraging families to “Shop Mom & Pop” businesses this holiday season, to support local communities and the business owners that support them. 

“Mom and Pop businesses help define the unique character of our towns,” said South Dakota Retailers Executive Director Nathan Sanderson. “Support the shops that provided team uniforms, event space, meals, and supplies to activities in your hometown during this past year.”

Main Street businesses strive to make downtown a friendly, inviting neighborhood for locals and visitors alike. These businesses also are a driving force in the overall satisfaction with the communities where people love to live, work, and raise a family, Sanderson said. 

The South Dakota Retailers Association reminds consumers that when

you shop local, you’re making a personal investment in your neighborhood and community. 

“The more you shop in your community, the more aware you are of what your town offers, “ Evans said. “It changes your mindset and you begin thinking locally.” 

In addition to special deals throughout town on Saturday in Spearfish, there also will be a small business vendor event at the Spearfish Holiday Inn Event Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., The Termesphere Gallery Holiday Open House from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Blind Guy Open house from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Rosemary’s Kitchen Open House from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The Lead Area Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a shop local campaign that kicks off at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30, at Miners and Merchants on Main St. in Lead.

“There will be 50 gift bags with gifts, coupons, and special offers just for shop local available to the first 50 people,” said chamber director Sierra Ward.

The campaign will also feature punch cards that residents can use at the various participating businesses in Lead. Shoppers can get a “punch” on their card for every purchase of $10 or more, and can use those punch cards to be entered into a drawing.

There is no limit on punch cards that you can submit. Cards with 10 punches or more can be dropped off at the chamber offices inside the Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center.

The drawing will take place at the wrap-up party on Dec. 19 at Blackstone Lodge and Suites in Lead.

To find a list of participating businesses and for more information, go to

Businesses throughout Sturgis are promoting Small Business Saturday with special deals.

And, the Sturgis Chamber will be giving away free “Shop Small” tote bags for your shopping adventure.

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