LAMPASAS — With the madness of Christmas shopping season in gear, many locally owned businesses offer discounts for consumers to take advantage of, with a distinct focus on Small Business Saturday.
Locally owned shops along U.S. Highway 281, an alternate route between Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth, report a fair amount of “traveling traffic” through their doors after Thanksgiving.
“I’m expecting a big weekend,” said Evelyn Heath, owner of Cutters Western Wear. “We had a great Saturday last year.”
Small-business owners often offer deals for shoppers to bring them in after Thanksgiving.
American Express established Small Business Saturday in 2010 as a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping days.
Different communities promote it in different ways, but all with the same goal.
“Your small businesses drive your local economy,” said Jana Perry, co-owner of Jay’s Finer Things. “If we weren’t here, you’d have a big gap in your community. We try to provide more than just retail services. You get a lot more personal service in a small business. We try really hard to cater to individual needs.”
Business owners in Lampasas also report shoppers who stop by while traveling through town.
“We always ask them where they’re from,” said Nickie Coughran, owner of the Boutique on the Square. “We get lots out of Houston. Some people have ranches they come for, and there are hunting leases at this time of year, of course.”
Perry said about a third of her clientele come from outside the city, from as close as Austin or as far away as Wyoming.
Heath, similarly, said 30 to 40 percent of her customers are not from Lampasas.
She’s had shoppers from San Saba and Copperas Cove and from as far as New York.
“We always talk to them and say ‘Where are you from?’ We always try to get to know the people who come in,” Heath said.