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Show Some Local Love This Valentine’s Day

Show Some Local Love This Valentine’s Day

As I wrote about during the holidays, one very effective and proactive way that people can make a difference is to “occupy local businesses.”

Since Valentine’s Day is the day of love, why not spread the love by doing the same and supporting only local community businesses? This includes shopping from local stores and eating and drinking at local, independent restaurants, cafes, coffee houses, and bars.

Spending at local businesses, rather than at chain stores or online, keeps money in the community. This helps local economies because these businesses are more likely to buy from local suppliers, hire these local service providers, and of course hire employees.

Buying locally doesn’t just mean buying at retail stores; it also means the local restaurant, coffee house, hair salon, and even local services such as plumbers, accountants, and electricians. All of these services are things the people need and want and make great gifts. Many sell gift cards or will make you one if you just ask them.

If none of these ideas suit your Valentine, there are several great web sites that list independents by business type including this one: Independent Coffee, Music, Movies, and Organic Food. Try searching for the kinds of places that your loved one likes.

Aside from a romantic meal together, perhaps the most popular gift on Valentine’s Day is a bouquet of roses. As I have written before, there are more and more places to find organic, earth-friendly flowers. You can find organic flower growers by visiting Local Harvest.

If you live near a year-round farmers’ market like I do, you can make your own gift basket featuring locally produced chocolate treats, baked goodies, and locally grown flowers. You can find your local farmers’ market via several web sites including the USDA site, or at Local Harvest.

Another way to show the local community some love is to help those who are truly in need. When I am feeling sorry for myself on Valentine’s Day or feeling unloved, I have found that giving back to my community in small, meaningful, ways can make me feel better too.

Read more: Conscious Consumer, Do Good, Food, Green, Valentine's Day, ,

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Judi Gerber

Judi Gerber is a University of California Master Gardener with a certificate in Horticultural Therapy. She writes about sustainable farming, local foods, and organic gardening for multiple magazines. Her book Farming in Torrance and the South Bay was released in September 2008.

37 comments

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10:19PM PST on Jan 30, 2014

Thanks for sharing.

6:58AM PST on Feb 10, 2013

Thank you

2:38AM PST on Jan 26, 2013

Thanks

2:32PM PST on Feb 5, 2012

To me any flowers are wonderful, they charge way to much for roses on Valentines day. Buy them another time as a just because gift.

4:33PM PST on Feb 4, 2012

yay for local :)

8:06AM PST on Feb 2, 2012

When I worked at the greenhouse, we went through a lot of Roses!

9:48PM PST on Feb 1, 2012

I read somewhere that Canada imports some 70-80% of its food.
That's a very precarious position to stay in considering the instability of our world with some governments setting up for another war.........
Farmers Market suppliers are trying to move away from that and supply food locally. People are encouraged to grow veggies during the short growing season.... fortunately, many are very successful !!

10:16AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

sounds like a plan

9:17AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

Roses are so high!

8:15AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

thanks

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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