Happy New Year! As we welcome 2016 with fresh intentions, take a moment to consider a resolution that will impact you and the members of your community. This year join me in making a commitment to spend ten dollars a week at a local business. Whether you need to pick up fresh produce, wine for the dinner you’re hosting, or a birthday gift for a coworker, take the initiative to go to your neighborhood venders for some of your shopping needs as the year goes on.
I believe wholeheartedly that we are so blessed to be included in a thriving, cultural, conscious, growing, patriotic, diverse, creative, and brilliant area of the world. Looking around, Hampton Roads looks almost nothing like it did even just five years ago. New Breweries, Farmer’s Markets, Community Gardens, Outreach Projects, and Restaurants, are constantly popping up. Norfolk has created a flourishing arts district, Virginia Beach is well on it’s way to having it’s own as well. We have to get out there and take advantage!
Choosing to give your money to local vendors keeps our community prosperous. In this way, we can keep Hampton Roads unique. The more of our money we give to our community, it’ll only continue the progress towards supporting the unique interests of our diverse people.
Keeping your money local also means keeping environmental impact down. The closer to home your product is, the less distance it has to travel, and ultimately there is less energy wasted.
As well, local businesses more often give back to non-profit organizations than big businesses do. Not only do we support small store owners, but we help them support the suffering members of the community.
Local restaurants are more likely to source Virginia grown produce, which equates to a more fresh dish and helping every dollar you spend impact the community that much deeper.
Next time you’re downtown in any city in Hampton Roads, take a look around and really notice all the bold people in our community creating places for us to sit, eat, enjoy, learn, sip a good latte, and spend quality time with each other. Walk into the local coffee shop and buy some beans from one of the many roasters in Virginia. Stop into the local cafe for lunch instead of ordering from a chain. Stop into the farmer's market around the corner from work to pick up produce for dinner. Select wine’s from one of the many exquisite wineries in the area.
Make the commitment, the resolution to use ten dollars a week to shop local this year. We all work very hard for our money, so be choosy with how you spend it! If every household in Virginia spent just $10 a week on local Virginia-grown food, $1.65 billion would be kept in our state to support our farmers, fund our schools, and contribute to a healthy local food system. Click on the link below to sign up for the Buy Fresh Buy Local ten dollars a week challenge. Join us in the dedication to help keep Hampton Roads unique, prosperous, and small business friendly.