Local mom-and-pops braved COVID-19 challenges for Small Business Saturday after suffering major financial losses during the initial pandemic shutdown.
Some stores provided appointment-only shopping, curbside pickup and in-store shopping with a limited number of customers for social distancing.
Next up is another chance to end the year strong and recoup the losses of the spring shutdown: Cyber Monday. Small businesses are posting their products on Instagram and Facebook so you can shop online.
The OTR Chamber of Commerce is helping with digital sales by launching the #OTRisOnline Instagram campaign.
“Shopping small has always been important and gives back to your local community, your local families. It’s definitely something everyone should prioritize this holiday season and really throughout the entirety of this pandemic,” said OTR Chamber executive director Kelly Adamson.
Adamson said the pandemic forced local businesses to get creative long before the holidays, and for some it's paid off.
“Even with a pandemic, 35 new businesses opened in Over-The-Rhine and 30% of those are minority-owned," she said. "Ten businesses expanded their businesses; some are thriving because of the overwhelming community support during the pandemic."
Northern Kentucky organizations are also supporting small businesses by drawing shoppers online.
Operation Winter is Coming gives shoppers the chance to buy holiday gift cards from small businesses in Northern Kentucky.
A list of local businesses to support can be found here.
The list includes restaurants, bars, breweries, sweet shops, museums and more, and establishments are categorized by the interests of gift recipients to make shopping for loved ones easier.