As I was considering my final blog and the message I wanted to leave you with, I was reminded of a letter we received at the chamber. Without giving you the details, it stated that a couple both living and working in this community sent out a shower invitation with registration at online sites only, much to the surprise and disappointment of the author.
The point is valid. And it is why we at the Chamber have been focused on promoting and educating everyone about the importance of supporting and shopping local. No doubt, the online battle is one being fought throughout the whole nation and our community is impacted like everyone else. Even the Supreme Court is at odds as to how to handle sales tax on online purchases. But the fact that this matter is in their court shows how big of an issue this is particularly in this day and age. Retailers are trying to adapt to their finicky customers, but the fact remains that we need businesses here so that we can get our goods same day. We need to support our local businesses who provide those tax dollars which support us all.
Perhaps it could be said that sometimes online shopping is convenient, and that there are some things better suited to be purchased in that way. But, the fact remains that there are plenty of stores, plenty of options, and plenty of reasons why supporting local businesses needs to be at the forefront of people’s minds. Local businesses are the backbone of our community: the same community in which you call home. I have talked to dozens of people who have recently moved their families to our area and they all say the same thing. They love it here!
I may be leaving the chamber, but I am not leaving this wonderful community. We have so very much to be thankful for already and much to support so that our community can continue to grow, evolve, and support us as well.
I will leave this blog with how I answered the letter: please pass the word to your friends and family on all that the Williston Area has to offer: the shopping, parks and recreation, employment and business opportunities, a community hospital, a community college, friendly neighbors, and caring leaders. And most importantly, spread the word on the importance of supporting our local businesses.