Editorial: This Christmas, shop local

Remember your local merchants and home-based businesses this holiday season

We’re down to just 13 shopping days left before Christmas morning. Thirteen days to find just the right gift for those loved ones on your list. And 13 days to support local businesses.

This Christmas, we urge our readers to remember their local merchants and home-based businesses this holiday season. There are more than 400 of them, stretching across Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs. More than 100 of those are involved with the Chamber of Commerce.

Each business name represents one person who was willing to invest in this community. It takes a lot of guts to hang an open sign up on your front drive, advertising hair services, computer repair or your artwork. It takes trust in your community, and potential customers, to renovate retail space in one of the downtown cores.

Each business is hoping to make ends meet, while providing employment for others. And while the draw to the malls in Chilliwack and beyond can be tempting, ask yourself if you can’t get a better product closer to home.

If you’ve never stepped foot in a shop on Pioneer, or never strolled through the Village except to sightsee, this is the time to do it.

This area is home to some of the best fresh farming products in B.C., too, from hazelnuts and cheese to cranberries and salmon.

Many shops are filled to the brim with Christmas cheer, great gift ideas and what you need to entertain this season.

But remember, they’re also filled with your friends and neighbours, all working at making this community a better place to live, and do business.