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Shoppers buy local on Small Business Saturday

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Posted at 5:21 PM, Nov 29, 2014
and last updated 2014-11-29 20:44:48-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Friday kicked off the holiday sales season for the big box stores, but local stores also experienced a boost this weekend thanks to Small Business Saturday.

Local shop owners encourage people to buy locally all year long, and they see Small Business Saturday as a chance to connect with shoppers who don't usually come into their stores.

“It's nice to touch and feel and visually see what you are purchasing,” said Jennifer Taylor who works at Payne Anthony Jewelry.

Katherine Weller, owner of Weller Book Works located in Trolley Square, says she feels the competition of the big box stores, but thinks people are again embracing the idea of buying local.

“I feel real change in the tide,” she said. “A few years ago, every new box store was celebrated and seen as a mark of Salt Lake being a truly great place, and what makes us truly great is us, and I think people are beginning to recognize that more.”

Several people made it a point to shop small stores this Saturday, not only to help keep local dollars in the community, but to discover things they can't find anywhere else.

“I think coming to the small businesses in Salt Lake gives you a way to find those unusual things that surprise and delight people,” said shopper Claudia Hackworth.

Businesses say it's difficult to know how much small business Saturday helps sales, though many store owners noted an uptick.

Economists expect retails sales to grow by five percent this holiday season.