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Shop Small, Indies First!

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On the heels of one shopping holiday, Black Friday, today brings us two more: Small Business Saturday and Indies First.

We’re definitely in the holiday season!

Small Business Saturday, founded by American Express just a few years back, aims to get the shopper to take a look inside their small, local businesses.  Joining in the day is the even younger, since only 2013, Indies First backed by the American Booksellers Association specifically to ask shoppers support their independent bookshops.

Per Publishers Weekly, Indies First is the brainchild of Sherman Alexie—who hired a party bus to take him and a group of authors to visit three local Seattle bookstores this year. The idea behind Indies First has quickly taken hold and bookstores in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia will be participating this year.



Two of Pasadena’s shopping districts –  Pasadena Playhouse District  (PPD) and Old Town Pasadena (OTP)  –  will offer plenty of opportunities for shoppers to participate in both events.  You may also want to see if your favorite small shop, wherever it is, participating today.  Check out the above links for details on the many stores and any related deals & specials for this day.

But I will offer some of my picks of the small/independent stores for you to check into, especially if you’ve never been, whether or not they have any special shopping & dining offers for this day.




PPD:  You’ll definitely want to visit at least 4 participating small businesses in the Playhouse District since it will then put you into play with a chance to win a $300 American Express gift card!  Plus, they’re having a $25 American Express gift card giveaway for those on Instagram: simply follow @playhousedistrict, take a selfie or pic at your favorite playhouse district small business, and tag #shopsmallplayhouse for a chance to win the $25 card! One winner EVERY HOUR hour this afternoon!  (Maybe it does pay to shop.)

Vroman’s Bookshop, Galerie Gabrie, Walt Girdner Photo Studio & Gallery, La Soie Bridal, Zona Rosa Caffe, T. Boyle’s Tavern, are just a few of the wonderful places to visit in this creative heart of Pasadena. Vroman’s will also be part of Indies First and have authors guesting as book workers to help shoppers make their book selections.



OTP:    Audio ElementBird Pick Tea & HerbCREPEstudioFlower Pepper Gallery, Maude Woods, & Stats.  Flower Pepper Gallery will have big discounts on some art products, Bliss bars, and coffee while they last, and, Maude Woods will be having free refreshments just for visiting them!




Fine, you say, but I’m not in, nor have any plans to be, in Pasadena today!  Well, definitely shop Hoopla Emporium on N. Fair Oaks in Altadena!  BTW, the owners are the current reigning Grand Marshal’s of the Pasadena Doo Dah Parade.

Those are just a few stops for your shopping pleasure today: independent, small, and with good people.  You’ll see and experience more if you get out there!  So, if you missed Black Friday, or yesterday wasn’t enough to cause you to shop until you drop, today Saturday gives you another chance to get into the holiday shopping spirit.

Happy Holidays, but, remember the true reason for the season…


Gotta Shop Small/Indie, Pasadena! Stay Thirsty My Friends

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