Cambridge Chamber of Commerce, businesses promote shopping locally

By Elizabeth Sias

The Cambridge Area Community & Business Expo was held this past Saturday, and the Cambridge Area Chamber of Commerce is promoting “Buy Local” in Cambridge.

Adrienne Carlson with the Leader at the Cambridge Community & Business Expo held Saturday, Oct. 22 at the Armed Forces Reserve and Community Center in Cambridge. Photo by Elizabeth Sias

“We want to lead, connect and grow our community in any way possible,” said Nicki Klanderud, president of the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce. “To do this we need support from everyone.”

That’s why the Chamber and local businesses are working together to encourage customers to shop locally.

Local businesses assist the community through a “multiplier effect”—one dollar spent at a local business will return five times that amount within the community through city taxes, employees’ wages and purchase of materials and supplies at other local businesses, the Chamber states.

In addition, these businesses will turn that dollar back into the community through school funding, social services and contributions to local non-profit organizations.

Neil Johnson, owner of Leader in downtown Cambridge, said he supports the buy local cause.

“It’s the obligation on the part of local retailers to prove their products and services in such a way that it attracts customers so they want to spend their money with us,” he said. “The goal is to instill in them a curiosity to find what is local, and part of the challenge for a small retailer with one small location is to get people to know we’re here—then leave it to us to earn your business.”

Both Johnson and Klanderud agree—a lot is available in Cambridge.

“We are fortunate to have so many options available to us right here in Cambridge,” Klanderud said. “You can grab an espresso to go, pick up locally grown produce or freshly baked bread, shop for unique gifts or household items, or choose a good book to read. You can get your hair cut, have your taxes prepared, see the doctor, buy insurance from a local agent, or apply for a mortgage at your friendly community bank or credit union.”

Top 10 Great Reasons To Buy Cambridge First
(Provided by the Cambridge Area Chamber of Commerce)

10. Build community pride. Everyone benefits when people shop locally.
9. Local businesses value you and appreciate your business.
8. It’s green. You’ll reduce gas consumption, pollution and vehicle costs.
7. It’s convenient. Buying local saves you time.
6. Increase our tax base—buying local supports our schools, police & fire departments, parks, streets and other important infrastructures.
5. Local businesses support youth and other community organizations that are important to you.
4. The more people who buy local, the more variety of products and services available.
3. Buying locally increases wages and job opportunities for you, your friends and neighbors.
2. If each of us redirect 10 percent of our purchases or services a month to a local business, it could add over $20 million to the local economy.
1. Buy Cambridge first—everyone thrives.