Napa Chamber: Every day is “Shop Small Business” day

While I appreciate the efforts made by our credit card companies to create a sense of urgency to support our local small business communities a few weekends out of the year, let’s please try to remember the important role these merchants continue to play in our U.S. economy as the “backbone” of every community in America.

This message is especially important during the holiday shopping season when online shopping seemingly becomes everyone’s new best friend.

I totally understand the propensity to do what’s deemed most convenient, but please consider the tax revenue benefits when purchasing from your favorite merchant; especially as your dollars go back into circulation to benefit public services like schools, libraries, police, and fire.

Data shows that 52% of local merchant revenue intake goes back into the local economy.

I haven’t even mentioned the benefits to our local job market and environment. Imagine the energy and resources being utilized to package, ship, and deliver into our local markets daily.

I’m a bit surprised that local environmentalists haven’t created an initiative that targets this practice to help save the overall deterioration of our local communities.

Local merchants are “friends and neighbors” with a vested interest and passion to serve you. Nothing makes me feel better than being able to try on and purchase a sport coat off the rack from Jay at Williamson & Co., a place I discovered and supported long before becoming a part-time resident in 2004.

Whether it’s the smile on Bettina’s face as I arrive at Angèle for my favorite burger and fries, the greeting my family receives from Giovanni and staff at Bistro Don Giovanni, or that go-to special occasion celebratory dinner with the Keffers (Cole’s Chop House), Chef Ken (La Toque) or Chef Sean (TORC) — each and every one creating priceless memories that last a lifetime.

I’m sorry to say but Amazon can’t hold water to Lisa Wunderlich — AKA “Wunder Woman” — (Wunder Boutique + Salon) or Muguette Rinaldi (Muguette Renee), who make clothes shopping for my wife an easy and enjoyable experience again.

I’ve been driving Mercedes Benz for more than 20 years, but no dealership has ever made me feel as comfortable when dealing with “pain in the butt” service/repair issues than Jay Perry Sr. and Jr. (Napa Tires), Kevin D’Adamo (B&G Tire) and the team at Alpina Car Center, who have a combined 119 years as Napa family-owned businesses.

Their level of expertise and friendly customer service are unmatched in the car service industry.

I could go on and on with my favorite locals list, from florists (Garaventa’s, Tesoro, Beau Fleurs) to bike repair/sales (Napa Valley Velo), to TV/AV sales/repair (Drapinski), to vacuum sales/repair (Napa Sew and Vac) but I think you get my point.

Please give our local business community the opportunity to serve you during this holiday season and beyond, each and every day.

Not only do they deserve it, we can help make it a special season for their families, employees, vendors, etc. and our local economy is the biggest beneficiary of them all.