John Barrette

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November 25, 2012
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Keeping dollars in the community

Shop small Saturday, a bid to help locally-owned stores compete during the holiday rush, played in Carson City to mixed reviews with upbeat overtones.“So far it has been pretty good today,” said Emily Wood, sales clerk at Two Sisters downtown, which also goes by the name Due’ Sorella. The shop on Curry Street offers home, garden, design and related items.Shopping there late in the morning was Pam Tumbusch of Carson City, who picked up various gifts for about $33 and said she intends to ship them for the holidays to folks who live in other places.“I saw the article in the paper and decided to come out,” she said, referring to a news report on the local and nationwide attempt to help small businesses compete Saturday.North on Curry street at Rocking and Rolling — a shop offering rocks, crystals, beads, books, amusing signs or other gift items — the owner also mentioned the news report.“It was wonderful to have it on the front page of the newspaper because we often get overlooked,” said Jeanette Champagne, the geologist who owns the shop.She noted 75 percent of her shop contains Nevada items, one room 100 percent, and she praised the idea of keeping money circulating in the community. Just next door at Artsy Fartsy, a couple echoed the value of such activity. “We came out to shop local,” said Beth Scott, who was browsing the art gallery with her husband, Bruce.At Hanifan’s Arts & Antiques, which is nearby on Curry Street, Vera Treat sold a couple of books and remarked just light traffic had come in as the morning progressed. “I hope it keeps coming,” she said. A few doors down and around the corner, Robin Travis was setting up a photographic art display outside Lakeside Properties, a satellite realty office of owner Kim Seifert, whose main office is on Carson City’s north side. Travis said she was getting plenty of interest. Next to her, Tracy McLoed and Sharon Fredlund were offering their Country Crystal wares, which include hillbilly crystal made from mason jars, jewelry items and a body scrub for dry skin.In the realty office, which participated in the shop small Saturday Telegraph Square promotion to take advantage of the nationwide push, broker Sandi Smith said it was a chance to network.She said she participated even though she and her daughter, Kari Breuer, are selling items a bit beyond the usual holiday gift price point. Out on Carson Street, Carson Jewelry and Loan had a few customers and one of the workers there indicated traffic had been just decent.“Today has been not overwhelming, but steady,” said Necia Turek.Reviews were mixed at businesses away from the downtown as well, though no one said the day was a total bust. The owner of Bellissimo in Carson Mall, which handles jewelry, accessories and other gift items for women, was relatively upbeat.“Not too shabby,” said Sarah Johnstone. “It’s gone really well.”Johnstone said she believes people realize small businesses will go away without support, so some are trying to patronize such shops.Don Biselli of Sparks, who just opened a shop along with David Olson in Carson Mall one door south of Boot Barn, said he liked what he saw as he surveyed foot traffic outside his door.Biselli operates Custom Framing Services and Olson operates Nature’s Images, which offers art. Biselli said they would stay through the holiday season and might open a frame shop permanently if it goes well.“Today’s good,” he said, anticipating more soon. “They’ll bring a lot more vendors in.” Elsewhere, in the world of bicycles, reports were definitely mixed.At Bicycle Authority in the 1500 block of North Carson street, Dan Turner said shop small Saturday had been OK but not great. He said he had sold one bike, but there was still time for more.Jimmy DelDonno at Bike Smith, on the other side of North Carson street in the 900 block, said: “As the name implies, shop small is small.” However, DelDonno said Bike Smith, owned by Rob Smith, has had a good 2012.At Bike Habitat, which is on Topsy Lane next to Best Buy, owner Dennis Coyne said he was getting great traffic and having a good day.He said he had strongly promoted the shop small idea, using an email blast and other methods, so it appeared to be paying off for him.In fact, he said, he even has a shop small doormat at his place that came from American Express, the large financial services firm behind the shop small promotion nationwide.UPCOMINGWHAT: “Made in Nevada Marketplace.”WHEN: Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. WHERE: Carson Mall

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Nov 26, 2012 02:28PM Published Nov 25, 2012 01:13AM Copyright 2012 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.