Stay local when shopping

November 24, 2018

For athletic teams, postseason play is the crucial part of their seasons.

For pastors and priests, Sunday morning worship services are key to their ministries.

For farmers, planting and harvest time top the list of importance.

For most retailers, it’s all about Christmas.

The Friday after Thanksgiving officially kicked off the Christmas shopping season. But we suspect that quite a few gifts already were purchased by Northeast and North Central Nebraskans willing to come out early or stay out late and look for bargains.

But that’s just the start.

There is still almost a month before Christmas arrives. And each and every one of those days — especially weekends — is important. A little snow and low temperatures help get people in the mood, but snowstorms and frigid weather aren’t of much help at all.

Shoppers have so many options these days. There’s nothing wrong with retail options in Omaha, Lincoln, Sioux City or elsewhere. There’s also nothing wrong with shopping online from some of those specialty catalogs that are so prevalent these days.

Except . . .

That those urban area shopping options and those online websites aren’t here in Northeast and North Central Nebraska.

They’re not in downtown Norfolk or at the Sunset Plaza, or located in Wayne, O’Neill or Neligh.

They’re not owned and operated by fellow Norfolkans and area residents.

They don’t employ neighbors or area residents. They don’t contribute to the economic well-being of this corner of the state.

They don’t make contributions of money to worthwhile causes.

They don’t give of their time to help with civic endeavors.

Those are some of the important reasons why shopping locally — whether that be in Norfolk or a smaller, area community — is so important, especially at Christmas time. For many retailers, a significant portion of their total annual sales come in this month-long period.

Don’t get us wrong. Christmas isn’t really about shopping, although the spirit of giving is a heartwarming aspect of the season. Christmas is about faith and the birth of Jesus in the manger.

But as we have written in this space in previous years, since we’re going to shop anyway for gifts, here’s an encouraging word to do that locally.

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