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By Molly Cerreta Smith

For those that are still working on their New Year’s resolutions list, the Village Health Clubs & Spas has a suggestion — shop local! Especially after the windfall of 2020, and the economic challenges that are still very real as 2021 unfolds, supporting local business and our economy is perhaps more essential than ever before.


Local First Arizona reports that when shoppers spend $100 dollars in a local establishment, $43 stays within the local economy, versus only $13 when that same $100 is spent at a non-local company. So when you shop small business, more money stays here. Win, win! If you don’t know where to start on your new quest to shop local the Village Health Clubs & Spas offers the following ideas:


Shop our Preferred Partners — The Village partners with many local vendors to support one another — and our members benefit with some pretty great deals! Each of our clubs has its own list of preferred partners offering Village Club members discount with services ranging from dining, hotels and resorts, golf, boutiques and shops, cryotherapy, services like dental and wellness, transportation, and more. So why not support local business and save? For a complete list of our locations’ Neighborhood Network Partners, click here.


Skip the Supermarket — Instead of shopping the mega-grocery stores and big box discount warehouses, consider getting groceries from local farmers. Many farmers’ markets around the Valley feature not only produce, but dairy, locally raised meats, and more. You don’t even have to abandon the convenience of your nearby grocery store as many carry local products — so check for items like Hayden Flour Mills, Shamrock Farms, Hickman’s Eggs, and others that are raised, harvested, or made locally.


Support a Friend — In 2020, many people fell victim to job loss or cut backs — and out of that rose the side hustle! Many people started making anything from soaps and sourdough bread (So. Much. Sourdough…) to jewelry and more. So check in with your friends that spent their quarantine time creating a new side gig and support them when you can!


Ditch Third Party Delivery Services — Oh how we love the convenience of dinner brought right to our doorstep! But many third party services take a pretty big cut from the restaurants’ sales. When possible, order directly from a local business. Another good thing that came from the challenges of 2020 is that many local restaurants now offer their own online systems featuring easy ordering and options like take-out, curbside pick-up, and even delivery. Same thing goes for seeing a Groupon for a local service, many businesses will offer that price if you just call and ask.


Stay at Home Support — Those that are staying in can still make their contribution to the local economy by purchasing online, buying gift cards to local establishments to use at a later time, or taking advantage of virtual programs and services offered by local companies. Many local businesses have gotten very creative — and savvy! — when it comes to how they continue to provide services to those that prefer to stay home as much as possible.


Every local business, from restaurants to retail, can benefit highly from the consistent support of shoppers so keep that in mind this year when spending in any way. The beauty of supporting local business is a one-of-a-kind experience — whether that means trying a unique service for the body or mind, dining at a place with a specialty menu, finding the perfect gift for a loved one, or unique treasure for the home that has a character that simply can’t be massed produced.


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