WESTMONT – During the Thanksgiving weekend, local businesses, shops and restaurants in downtown Westmont supported Small Business Saturday.
The annual national promotion, organized by American Express, reminds people that 52 percent of sales spent at local businesses stay in the community, according to American Express.
Although the business promotion has been successful in the past, mother-daughter owners of Burr Ridge Lighting and Design Center in Westmont, Jan and Juliana Ejsmont, said this year was rather slow.
“This year it’s been slow probably because of the holidays,” Juliana Ejsmont said. “People are shopping at big stores for sales.”
If store owners didn’t see a significant jump in local shoppers, the local bakeries and restaurants had better luck.
Two residents, Paul Redmann and his son, Nathan, said they ventured out to downtown Westmont for an ice cream treat at Tasty Treat, 19 S. Cass Ave.
“They should do it [Small Business Saturday] more,” Paul Redmann said. “Small businesses have a hard time making it, so they should keep doing promotions like that.”
Co-owner of the Sweet and Savory spot at 31 N. Cass Ave., Danielle Kirin, said Small Business Saturday was wonderful for her business.
“It’s been great,” Kirin said. “It’s nice to have everyone out and about.”
Another café in town, La La Li Bakery, 20 N. Cass Ave., was not running specific deals for the day, but hot cocoa and holiday cookies were on sale for the evening Christmas parade, according to employee Mary Atinaja.
“I would like people to take advantage of [the promotion] and come out, shop more and poke their heads into all storefronts,” La La Li employee Gladys Zvirbulis said. “People maybe forget or drive by in a hurry and forget we’re here.”
All agreed that shopping locally is important for all local businesses.
“It’s not just about keeping the business, it’s about what the [businesses] give back to the community,” said Barbara Latzel, of The Framemakers, 10 N. Cass Ave.