North Alabama small business owners thankful for holiday market in Huntsville

Small business owners are hoping you'll shop local this holiday season

Posted: Nov 22, 2020 4:21 PM
Updated: Nov 23, 2020 3:46 PM

Small business owners are hoping you'll shop local this holiday season.

"Especially towards the end of the year when things are possibly going to be shutting back down, we really have to keep putting our names out there and supporting one another and just bringing awareness to everyone else in the community that small businesses are having a hard time and we really need their support right now," said Chelsea Jones.

You just heard from one small business owner in Huntsville that took part in the holiday market at Greene Street.

Chelsea Jones told us many vendors are hoping for an uptick in sales as the holiday season starts.

WAAY-31 learned about what these local businesses are bracing for this holiday season.

In previous years, small business owners flourished at several different markets and pop up shops like the one on Greene Street.

But as soon as coronavirus hit, they now only have one or two for the year.

At the holiday market, vendors told us this year hasn't put them down and out just yet... but they are urging you to shop local this year to help them stay in business.

"We went at one point in time last year to having 6 events a week, on a good week, to now we have one to two a week, so we're definitely feeling the effects of the pandemic," said Janae Smith.

Janae Smith owns Yums-Yums Popcorn and Lemonade.

She's owned this small business for 4 years and admits this year has been a challenge.

During the pandemic, she's had to make adjustments... like she isn't giving out samples or had to add discounts on bundles.

She even had to stop asking for signatures on purchases.

But she insists the holiday market at Greene Street is a blessing for anyone involved.

"Even if you come get a card and you leave a review or you post on social media for us and just bring awareness to our name in general, that way we can get it out there to people that may have never seen us before," said Chelsea Jones.

At the market, there were more than 15 vendors and everyone had to wear a mask to enter, limiting the amount of people inside at one time.

While many owners are still in need of more business, one wreath designer is doing well right now.

Mary Brosemor says she's had an overflow of orders, keeping her busier than expected.

"We have a lot of repeat customers. I've been doing this for about 5 years and so we have a lot of repeat customers so it's been very good," said Brosemor.

Brosemer credits big box stores cutting its holiday hours to the amount of people shopping local instead.

While this year still brings challenges as a small business owner, so far, these two business owners are managing.

Smith sharing this message to those considering starting their own business venture:

"I've seen a lot of businesses grow from nothing just during this time period where people have needed convenience or needed other amenities and haven't been able to get them," she said.

If you missed this market, a lot of vendors are on social media so if you're not comfortable coming out in the crowds, you can order online.

The next holiday market where you can attend in person will be Sunday, December 6th.

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