Obama Family Patronizes Small Businesses During Holiday Shopping

Date: November 30, 2015

President, Daughters Continue Holiday Tradition On Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday was popular with both the average US consumer and the First Family this year. The AP reported that President Obama and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, on Saturday visited local small businesses in Washington, DC, continuing the family’s trend of shopping local for the holidays. The President and his daughters visited Upshur Street Books in Washington’s Petworth neighborhood. While at the bookstore, the President purchased nine books. Following the bookstore visit, the President and his daughters visited Pleasant Pops market in the Adams Morgan neighborhood, which is “known for fresh fruit frozen pops.” The Washington Post reported that the President had previously “patronized Politics and Prose” for the last three years, which is a “long established bookstore in upper Northwest Washington.” The Post stated that it isn’t clear what prompted a switch in the President’s choice of bookstores, except that Upshur was “giving out baked goods, drinks and discounts, as well as hosting local authors, all day.” Meanwhile, The Hill “Blog Briefing Room” blog provided a list of the purchases President Obama and his daughters made at Upshur, and indicated that the purpose of the visit is “to encourage consumers to shop at local and independent retailers during a weekend usually reserved for large, big-box retailers offering steep discounts.”

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small Business Saturday offered local small businesses a chance to encourage customers to “shop small” by offering special promotions, discounts, and events. As the Post indicated, these types of events are popular with consumers at all levels, including the First Family. While the average consumer’s purchases go unnoticed by the media, when a President shops at a local business, it can help draw positive press to both that establishment, and to small businesses as a whole by serving as a public reminder to “shop small” during the holiday season.

Additional Reading

The New York Times and Reuters also reported on the First Family’s visits to local small businesses.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

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