Businesses Expect More Small Business Saturday Buyers This Year


When Main Street Ensemble opened in downtown Port Huron in September 2020, it was only a few months before the special Small Business Saturday shopping party.

The owners of the clothing store have had more business than they expected with fairly strict COVID-19 pandemic regulations in place, but they are hoping this year that they are better prepared for it. what to expect on Saturday.

Company co-founder Dylan Wolf said during the pandemic there was a big push to buy small. He thinks it carried over to this year and hopes there will be better participation with people eager to shop again.

“I’m pretty excited for Small Business Saturday,” said Chad Roberts, co-founder of Main Street Ensemble.

Main Street Ensemble co-founder Chad Roberts hangs a shirt in downtown Port Huron on November 17, 2021.

What is Small Business Saturday?

Small Business Saturday is an American shopping holiday on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, which is the busiest shopping time of the year, said Thelma Castillo, president and CEO of the Blue Water Area Chamber of Commerce.

Cynthia Cutright, who oversees special projects in Port Huron and is the interim director of the Downtown Development Authority, said Small Business Saturday was a reminder in the holiday season’s craziness of the importance of local small businesses.

It’s a reminder that small businesses are out there and there’s nothing people can get online that they can’t get locally, she said.

The Lazy Llama decorated for the holiday season in Marine City on November 17, 2021.

What this means for local businesses

Lazy Llama co-owner Wendy Kellehan said the three busiest days of the year for the Marine City store are Black Friday, Merrytime Christmas and Small Business Saturday.

Since they reopened from the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been shopping locally and it will be a day to celebrate that, she said.

Another store co-owner, Diane Street, said it seemed like there was still great pressure to support locals, but local businesses are also getting the support they need because people don’t travel as much and stay a little closer to home with the pandemic.

The store will have specials for Small Business Saturdays and Street’s is happy to have more people shopping than last year.

A llama ornament hangs in The Lazy Llama in Marine City on November 17, 2021.

“We hope this year has returned to normal a bit,” she said.

Wolf said that this year Main Street Ensemble wanted to focus on younger audiences as it has garnered a lot of interest from local high school kids as vintage becomes more and more popular.

There will be a buy of two, an offer on a t-shirt, 20% off outerwear and 30% off denim sales. Hours will likely be extended and people will be able to check their social media for more details, he said.

“We expect a good turnout,” he said.

Main Street Ensemble in downtown Port Huron on November 17, 2021.

Small Business Saturday in 2021

Cutright said this is the year businesses can try to make up for lost business last year during the pandemic and have a good foundation until 2022.

The DDA hasn’t done something specific for holidays like raffles in recent years, as the organization wants to focus on small businesses. Cutright collects local store hours of operation on this day as some businesses increase their hours of operation, she said.

There will also be events on the following Saturdays to keep having something special downtown. There will be a ‘walk the window’ event on December 4 where people can see the storefronts, a cocoa exploration on December 11 with around 20 participating companies and December 18 will be a ‘sticky’ Christmas day, said Cutright.

“You don’t have to shop small businesses just on the 27th,” she said.

Llama's hoofprints lead people deeper into The Lazy Llama in Marine City on November 17, 2021.

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Castillo said he hopes the entire county will have plenty of small business activity on Saturday. The weather will play a role and if it’s a sunny day people are more likely to come and support local businesses.

“I hope it’s a great day and I hope people come and support their local business owner,” Castillo said.

She said people should remember that local businesses are the ones that sponsor community events and organizations like little leagues. These are the people who live, work and believe in the community and people should be helping their local business owner this holiday season so that they are in a good position as 2022 approaches.

“We have to remember that we want our community to thrive and our businesses to thrive,” she said.

People can contact Main Street Ensemble at (810) 689-4844 and can follow the company on Facebook and Instagram. People can contact The Lazy Llama at (810) 676-5128 and [email protected] People can find out more about Small Business Saturday and local events in Port Huron on the downtown Facebook page.

Main Street Ensemble in downtown Port Huron on November 17, 2021.

Contact Bryce Airgood at (810) 989-6202 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @ bairgood123.


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