By Patty Talahongva
Local merchants are gearing up for the annual Indie Week, sponsored by Local First Arizona. This year it will run from June 30 thru July 7. It’s part of National Independents Week, where consumers are encouraged to buy from independent, locally owned businesses.
“When we spend our dollars at local businesses, up to four times more money stays and circulates in the local economy, supporting jobs, services, and communities,” says Kimber Lanning, director of Local First Arizona.
This year there are several new member businesses that have signed up to participate in Indie Week. They range from entertainment and arts to legal services, health and medicine, shopping, fitness and business services. One new member is Books, 9201 N. 7th Ave. (www.Bookson7thAve.com), and owner Mary Anne Ramirez is looking forward to seeing the impact on her used bookstore.
The store is approximately 6,000 square feet and is packed with one-quarter of a million books, she estimates. She’s operated her store for 23 years but had never heard of Local First until this past year.
“I’m hopeful people who never heard of us get to see the variety of books and services we offer,” she says. While it is strictly a used bookstore, Ramirez can order customers new books. She also provides a mail-order service and she bus books for in-store credit.
As a graduate of Occidental College in California, Ramirez maintains a relationship with the library there and the school sends her books on art and history as well.
In addition to books you can purchase actual LP vinyl albums, VHS movies and comic books. Perhaps the best deals are greeting cards for all occasions that sell for just 50 cents.
Ramirez will honor the Golden Coupon that is available during Indie Week and is good for 20 percent off goods and services. In fact, she’s starting to look over the list of participating businesses so she, too, can get a good deal at a local business.
Once you print the coupon you can use it at different participating businesses during the week.
Lanning adds that Independents Week also is important because business tends to slow down during the summer months in Phoenix.
“Our hope is that consumers will learn about the value of supporting local businesses during Indie Week,” Lanning says, “and then continue to support our independent businesses far beyond our week-long celebration.”
Check www.localfirstaz.com for a complete listing of businesses participating in Indie Week and to print a Golden Coupon. You also can find information on how to sign up to win one of many “staycations.”