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Small merchants can offer a lot

Filling the gift wish list can be a time-consuming challenge for even the most resilient shoppers among us.

And at this time of year, it becomes paramount to find that perfect gift to bring a smile to loved ones’ faces.

This year, as the original Black Friday shopping morphs into the pre-Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving Day and after a smorgasbord of retail opportunities, we’d like to make a simple suggestion — one we feel not only will likely provide you with great gift selections but also will support your community.

In 2010, American Express launched Small Business Saturday to encourage American shoppers to consider small retailers and merchants as they think of their holiday shopping. The idea follows the creation of Black Friday and Cyber Monday — both more closely associated with discounts and promotions at larger retail chains and online shopping businesses.

This year’s Small Business Saturday falls on Nov. 30 — today.

The concept behind Small Business Saturday is for consumers to support local businesses that create jobs and boost the economy both locally and nationally. Small businesses here in Denton and across the nation serve as the backbone of our economy, our community and for a number of our families.

The holiday shopping season is also important to many of our small businesses because studies show that about 20 percent to 40 percent of their annual revenues come during the holiday season.

The idea has taken root and is showing significant growth. Last year, nearly 70 million people shopped at small businesses in their communities for an estimated $5.5 billion in sales to independently owned businesses, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

From tasty treats to boots and saddles to a full range of clothing for all sizes and ages, Denton’s small businesses have much to offer the gift-seeking shopper.

At, you can find the lists of local shops in your immediate area as well as a handy map to show you how to get to the shop.

For Denton, a total of 321 small businesses are listed in the categories of dining, shopping, entertainment, travel and services.

Many of the businesses around the Square are on the list including First People’s Jewelers, Courthouse Collection, Weldon’s Saddle Shop and Western Wear, Cupboard Natural Foods, Small Fry and many, many others.

By shopping locally at independently owned businesses, you also may just find that perfect, unique gift you’ve been searching for — and at the same time show support for the local business owner offering jobs to fellow residents. And, you’ll be keeping the sales taxes in Denton coffers.

What better way to make it a happy occasion for all involved.

See you there this Saturday.