Today is Small Business Saturday and local merchants are hoping to get a boost out of the day, now in its third year.
Sue Wright, owner of Wild Bird Center off Merz Boulevard in Fairlawn, like other small businesses, is offering promotions geared toward the day.
At 11 a.m. today, the store will host a book-signing event featuring Ohio naturalist, artist and NPR commentator Julie Zickefoose, author of The Bluebird Effect, illustrated with 320 of Zickefoose’s paintings. Also available for signing are two of Zickefoose’s other books.
The shop, which Wright and her late husband bought more than 15 years ago, sells wild bird-related items: food, feeders, houses, baths and more. It’s a block away from, and in sight of, Summit Mall.
Wright noted her sales haven’t recovered from the dip they took in the depths of the recession, though they’ve been up every month since May. “I’m hanging in and loving it,” she said.
Stagecoach Antiques, a fixture on West Market Street in Akron for decades, is marking Small Business Saturday with a drawing for a chance to win a $50 gift certificate.
“Of course we will have cookies,” said Eileen Moats, president of Stagecoach.
The shop began when Leo Walter Jr. started selling items from his mother’s dining room.
Merchants in Kent
In Kent today, merchants are banding together for a “Sweet Finds” contest from 1 to 5 p.m.
The contest involves finding a hidden sweet in each participating business listed on a contest card. Shoppers can pick up the Sweet Finds contest card at Earl’s Nest, a public gathering spot in Acorn Alley, beginning at 1 p.m. today or later. Acorn Alley is a series of shops and restaurants in an alley running off Main Street. Earl’s Nest is next to Arctic Squirrel Ice Cream.
Cards must be completed by 5 p.m. today to be placed in a drawing for $500 in downtown Kent business gift cards. The first completed card with all correct answers wins. The nonprofit Main Street Kent is organizing the event.