Spokane celebrates 'Small Business Saturday'

Spokane celebrates 'Small Business Saturday'

SPOKANE, Wash. -

 Another year, another Black Friday craze. Shoppers across the country went all in for the best holiday deals.

Now the Black Friday chaos is over, and communities across the country are focusing instead on Small Business Saturday.

Balloons dotted Garland Avenue Saturday morning as people strolled through the neighborhood.

"We want to get shoppers to come down to the neighborhood and check out our stores," explained Julie Shepard-Hall, one of the owners at Zipperz.

This year, the Garland District is doing something different to encourage shoppers to check out their stores.

"Sometimes they drive by and they never really stop in to see what's going on, so we are doing a scavenger hunt," Shepard-Hall said.

Customers were encouraged to find specific items at various businesses by 6 p.m.

"We're giving away one of our Garland District shopping bags filled with items throughout the district," Shepard-Hall said.

Shoppers were excited by the challenge.

"Well that sounds like fun!" said Joanne, who didn't want to give her last name.

Joanne and Paula love coming to the Garland District because of its funky charm.

"I enjoy coming to the Garland District because every time you never know what you're going to find up here," Paula, who didn't want to give her last name, said.

They say they make an effort to shop local when they can.

"I used to have small businesses, different ones, so I like to honor them and what they're doing," Joanne said.

"We want people to remember that we are small businesses, most of us are owned by husband wife or single owners so this is really important to us," Shepard-Hall said.

Julie explains the Garland District is working to foster its community feel.

"Garland is really working on being a community neighborhood that people want to come down and hang out, get to know the owners of the businesses," she said.

She says shopping local isn't just something to do on Small Business Saturday.

"We want to keep encouraging people to keep coming down and seeing us, because all year long it takes people just stopping in," she said. "We're not like the big box stores."

Small business Saturday started in 2010, and the day was officially recognized by the US Senate in 2011.

American Express estimates 95 million people shopped on Small Business Saturday across the country last year.