Editorial: Shopping locally for the holidays benefits the whole community

That money you spend here, tends to stay here

Finishing up your Christmas shopping? Or do you wait until the last minute?

Are you one of those who doesn’t even start until Christmas Eve, then enjoy the adrenaline rush of having to get it all done at once, and on a deadline?

Either way, we’d like to convince you to try to find your gift items in the Cowichan Valley community this year.

First, the Cowichan Valley has great shopping opportunities to offer. From big box stores staffed by your friends and neighbours, to specialized boutiques and unique businesses, there’s almost nothing you can’t find just a few kilometres from home. It’s one of the great things about living in Cowichan. We’re rural, but we’re not that rural. We still have all the amenities of larger centres (with bonus less traffic).

You can pick up everything from chocolates to clothing, electronics to experiences. For the person who has everything, you can also make a donation to a local non-profit or charity in someone’s name if that is the most meaningful way for you to celebrate the season of giving.

Lake Cowichan has a number of boutiques to check out, or how about a gift certificate for a great meal out at their favourite local restaurant?

When you shop locally there are benefits for the whole community. That money you spend here, tends to stay here in a much larger percentage than if you head out of town. And there’s a mulitplier effect, as well. Your dollars grow within the community. Local business owners in turn are far more likely to spend their dollars in the community as well, both the profits and when ordering inventory. That means a more robust economy and more jobs for Cowichan Valley citizens.

Local businesses support our sports teams and entertainment events, parades and fundraisers. The owners’ kids go to school here, and parents belong to various organizations. They are part of the community, part of what makes the community special.

You might even find you enjoy your shopping experience more with the personal, local touch.

So before heading online to shop trans-national mega corporations, consider, at least, heading to the local shops in your community. Especially if you’re still looking for that special item, getting it here means getting in time for the big day, too. There’s no time like Christmas to find a new favourite go-to.

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