Post Date: Monday, November 30, 2020
I’m Anna, Downtown Boulder’s VP of Events & Membership. Outside of work, I’m also a wife and a mother of two kids (4 and 6). For my family, convenience and efficiency are key to our day to day survival. I know that I'm preaching to the choir here and that this is the case for many of us. Unfortunately, sometimes making use of Amazon becomes the quickest path to get things done. Sometimes I will just mention something we need and don’t even realize that my husband has ordered it until it appears on my front porch a couple of days later.
The existential threat that so many small retail stores and restaurants are facing this year has really made me think about the role we play in what our community looks like. Those locally owned businesses are fundamental to what draws us to our city centers and creates that “feel” that we love. You are not going to choose to live in a place like Boulder because of the big box stores that you may or may not find here, but you may be charmed by that great local coffee shop with a cool vibe, the massive independent bookstore or the local gift boutique that always seems to have just the right present for everyone on your list.
Normally, my extended family reach out to us around Thanksgiving and remind us to update our Amazon wish lists for ourselves and our kids so that they can send us holiday gifts. Sure, it is convenient and efficient, but wouldn’t it be better if it could also be doing something that helps those small, local businesses we love survive this incredibly challenging year? My husband and I agreed it is high time we do more shopping locally for the holidays. But, as many of our family live out of state and our lives demand convenience (not to mention there is a pandemic and we are all trying to limit our exposure) – what to do?
Many local businesses sell items online. So, why not just create a custom wish list? We chose Giftster, but there are dozens of options out there – that let you curate your own wish list with items from any website. Into the Wind and Boulder Book Store have great selections for our kids. I added gift cards for some of my favorite downtown Boulder restaurants and to places like Peppercorn and Savory Spice. My husband’s a tea lover – so Ku Cha and Dushanbe Tea House are great ones for his list. Plus, if your plans this year include giving some love to a local charity – just add a donation in your name to your wish list!
And if your favorite store does not offer things online – give them a call. Ask them if they take orders over the phone and whether they offer shipping or curbside pick-up. Let them know that you want to support them this holiday season – I know they will appreciate it.
Downtown Boulder has also put together some carefully crafted Love the Local Gift Boxes and will take care of that shopping trip for you. For the foodies or outdoorsy types to self-care packages and a special kit just for the kids – there are great choices for everyone on your list.
I hope you find your way to Love our Locals this holiday season (and beyond!). Boulder would not be the same without them.
- DBP Anna