With another Black Friday behind us, the big focus this weekend was on shopping locally for this year's Small Business Saturday.
For nearly a decade, the Saturday after Thanksgiving has encouraged people to shop at their favorite local businesses.
Shops in downtown Marion and Anna honor the day with art, crafts and special coupons for shoppers.
Andy Lee, whose brother owns the Mercantile Company in Marion, says Small Business Saturday allows locals to see the talents of those in their community.
"There are people around us who are using their talents and gifts and abilities to make products that we can sell locally," Lee explains."It's just a great boom for our area - helps everybody out. And it just pours right into specifically Southern Illinois."
Meanwhile down in Union County, small business owners there echoed the same feelings.
Steve Hornbreak, owner of Kiki's Coffee House, saying that shoppers can find more gifts than they expect at local shops.
"There's a lot of shopping here, especially if you're here local, there's a lot of our shops up and down the street selling different kinds of gifts," Hornbreak says. "Really, you could do all of your Christmas shopping right here in downtown Anna - and some of our surrounding stores right here."
Overall, shopping locally is an excellent option this weekend to find your perfect holiday gifts while helping your neighbors.
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