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Louisville-original businesses spotlighted during 'Small Business Saturday'

Louisville made the switch from big box stores to small, local shops on Saturday as customers flocked to storefronts to "shop small".

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — From the local storefronts of Louisville neighborhoods to the various vendor pop-up shops, Kentuckiana saw a surge in support for shopping local, Saturday. 

This year, Small Business Saturday comes at a time when 51% of U.S. shoppers plan on buying less due to inflationary pressures on their budget.

The impact of inflation is not lost on local businesses either. Jennifer Rubenstein, director of the Louisville Independent Business Alliance, said that comes at a time when businesses are still recovering from the long-standing effects of the pandemic.

"I don't know if there's ever a normal time in business. But, these new challenges, coming out of the pandemic [are] inflation, supply chain delays, just unavailability of products," she said. "It has made everything, still, topsy-turvy. But one thing that I admire about small business is they can be very nimble."

This Small Business Saturday, the Louisville Independent Business Alliance (LIBA) made it a point to platform some of the Metro's small businesses and vendors.

The organization partnered with the Louisville Urban League to plan the MELANnaire Marketplace, Saturday at the Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center. 

Rubenstein said it was able to spotlight 30 to 40 West Louisville businesses. 

LIBA held a similar event, Saturday morning, in South Louisville at the Colonial Gardens.

"We want to remind people when you buy local, more dollars stay circulating in the local community," Rubenstein said. "That's compared to an Amazon or online where hardly anything will stay local."

It's reported that 67% of Louisville's workforce is comprised of employees working for small businesses.

"The business environment is always challenging," Rubenstein said. "However, we have seen some resurgence in some sectors of local independence." 

In recent years, Small Business Saturday has become a crucial day for locally-owned stores and shops.

While this year's event may be over, Rubenstein said small businesses will be holding sales through the end of the year, in hopes of a larger holiday turnout. You can find some of those Louisville small businesses here.

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