‘Independents’ celebrated

Published 8:36 pm Saturday, June 29, 2013

The city of Suffolk is setting aside this week to celebrate “independents” — independent businesses, that is.

Locally owned restaurants, merchants, galleries and venues in the historical downtown area will offer special discounts and promotions to entice new and existing customers to visit their locations.

Folks who visit a participating business and make a purchase will receive a bingo-like card to take to other participating businesses. Once they get five stamps in a row, they can turn in the bingo card at the Suffolk Visitor Center, 524 N. Main St., to be entered into a drawing for prizes.

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Participating local business owners said they think the promotion will help bring people downtown.

“I think it’s good, because it keeps everyone in the downtown area included,” said Jeanette Holland of Holland’s Country Gourmet and Mosaic by Holland’s. “It creates an improved relationship and fellowship with local citizens interacting with local eateries.”

The business owners noted that shopping local supports families and the locality more than shopping at a nationally owned chain.

“When you buy local, you are supporting people’s American dream and directly supporting your local economy,” said Connie Womack and Jeremy Oliver of C-Fit Studio. “That is what we do at C-Fit Studio — share our passion for health and wellness to all that we can to build a better community.”

Dwayne Godwin, owner of N’Dulge Eclectic Soul Cuisine, said community support also keeps his business going.

“Our business growth is built based on support from the community,” he said, adding the restaurant will have special dishes next week. “We feel like our restaurant is an opportunity for us to give back.”

Participants include: All About Virginia and More, Amici’s Italian Restaurant, As Time Goes By Antiques, Baron’s Pub, Brandon House Furniture, C3 Vino, C-Fit Studio, Embroidery Etc., Grafik Trenz, Hobby Game and Sports Station, Holland’s Country Gourmet, Jester’s Gallery Shop, Mosaic by Holland’s, N’Dulge Eclectic Soul Cuisine, Planters Peanut Center, Richardson and Nash, Riddick’s Folly Museum and Gift Shop, Seaboard Station Railroad Museum and Gift Shop, Serendipity Salon, Shooting Star Gallery, Suffolk Art Gallery, Suffolk Visitor Center and Gift Shop, The Plaid Turnip and The Second Floor.

For additional information, contact the Suffolk Economic Development Department at 514-4049. The bingo card can also be downloaded at www.facebook.com/LoveLocalBuySuffolk.