On Small Business Saturday, shops in downtown Lebanon had to compete with the cold and the annual Civil War football game.
Despite those obstacles, shop owners were very pleased with the number of shoppers who ventured downtown. The event is put together each year by the Lebanon Downtown Association to promote locally owned and operated businesses.
This is the first year Elena Sprouse has taken part of the event in Lebanon, although she is very experienced in the retail trade.
Sprouse bought the Hidden Treasures shop in January and took over management of the business in February. Located at 764 Main Street, the store offers furniture, home goods, jewelry and many other items.
Sprouse ran a similar business in Scottsdale, Arizona, before moving to Oregon to be closer to family.
“Our First Fridays are very important, Small Business Saturdays are important. Any kind of activity or event we can bring people to downtown is extremely important,” Sprouse said. “We have some lovely stores downtown, we really do, and the more people know about them, the better.”
Treml's Jewelry held its second annual Stocking Stuffer Saturday, offering hundreds of items for sale for $9.95.
“We do 600 to 700 pieces. Last year we did it and it was the best day we had in November,” said employee Ron Salee.
The business was fortunate to be open at all. On Sunday, Nov. 24, the front of the building was accidentally by a vehicle. A pick-up truck had stalled in the parking lot across Main Street and when the engine fired up the vehicle careened wildly across the street.
Jim Treml, the owner of Treml's Jewelry, said no one was hurt in the accident. The impact crumpled the front of the building and the brickwork which makes up the lower part of the façade will have to be replaced, he said.
“At least the door works. It could have been worse,” Treml said.
Yvette Meyer, the owner of Northwest Apparel and Graphics and also the president of the Lebanon Downtown Association, said the goal of Small Business Saturday is to let customers know they have local options.
“It’s just the personal, one-on-one service. You’re not going to get something local, like Warrior gear, you’re not going to get that from Amazon,” Meyer said. “I think folks like coming down, finding a good deal on Shop Small Saturday, and they can have that personal relationship with the business owners. It’s big for us to have folks come downtown because we want to drive people back downtown.”