Support our Local Small Businesses

Shop Small for Open Lunch

10% off with student I.D.

10% off with student I.D.

Isabella Adkins, reporter

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I recently worked on a group project for CCP Communications. My group elected to support small businesses as part of the assignment which focused on getting involved with the Cortland community. Through the process I’ve learned a lot about the struggles that small businesses face and the benefits they have to offer for the economies, communities, and customers of their local communities.

I think it’s safe to say that franchises are taking over. This can be observed in our own community in the several corporate businesses throughout Cortland and perhaps even more so in neighboring Howland and Niles.

When you drive down the street in Cortland you pass two corporate drug stores across from each other, three dollar stores all on the same street, and perhaps most relevant to us students, several franchise fast-food chains.

When the juniors and seniors here at Lakeview go out for open lunch, they typically got to Subway, McDonald’s or Burger King, to name a few conveniently located near the high school. In light of all of these chain restaurants, the several family owned local businesses in our area tend to be overlooked due to convenience.

However, these big chain businesses don’t have a positive impact on our local community in the way that local businesses do.

According to a 2012 study conducted by private research firm Civic Economics, “48 percent of each purchase at local independent businesses was recirculated locally, compared to less than 14 percent of purchases at chain stores.”

When people shop small, the money they spend stays local by recirculating into the economy in the form tax dollars. The taxes that local businesses pay end up going towards our schools, police stations, fire departments and the overall improvement of the local economy. In this way, local businesses indirectly benefit their local community.

Small businesses may help their communities more directly. They tend to be more involved and give back to their local communities by contributing to local causes, something franchises don’t do.  Small businesses bring residents together and build a sense of community.

A local example of this can be found in Top Notch Diner. Top Notch Diner hosts car shows and supports Lakeview, among other schools. Top Notch has helped out with band fundraisers, supports our school newspaper and yearbook, donates to the football spaghetti dinner, as well as sponsoring other Lakeview teams.

Of his restaurant’s involvement with our school, owner Gary Frederick says, “we try to support as much as we can with them.”

The local small businesses of Cortland and the Cortland community can be mutually beneficial. Being a customer to restaurants like Top Notch Diner, China House, Four Star Diner, El Terrero, and Brother’s Pizza can help to improve our community.

As a way to engage with the Cortland community, my group members and I talked to a few of the small businesses in our area. On behalf of these small businesses and Lakeview juniors and seniors, we arranged a deal for open lunch.

Order from China House for open lunch and get 10% off with your student I.D. Call 330-637-2788.

Next time you go out for open lunch, consider choosing one of the several family owned restaurants in our area as opposed to the franchises that you may typically go to.

You can show your support for all things local business even beyond open lunch.

Consider getting pet supplies from the local pet shop on West Main Street, Totally Dog, as opposed to going to one of the two pet stores all the way in Niles. Instead of going to Sparkle or Walmart, head to the family owned B&K Farm Market on State Route 5 for groceries.

I learned a lot from this CCP communications project, especially about just how important our local small businesses are. After reading this article, I hope you recognize this too.