Shop small and support your community on Small Business Saturday!

The holidays are all about giving, and one of the most practical ways you can support your community is by shopping small!

As we all know, the pandemic and current economic state have posed many challenges to small businesses in recent years—including a lack of customers, supply chain issues, and workforce shortages. Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday—a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for your community.

Sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the celebration was officially established by American Express in 2010. What began as a fantastic marketing initiative designed to help small businesses compete against major retailers has blossomed into an opportunity to get out and discover all the amazing, unique businesses and shops in your back yard.

Here are some locally-owned shops and stores your co-workers will be supporting this holiday season—and beyond:

Inkwell & Brew—Estes Park, Colorado
Recommended by Tariq 

Tariq: Inkwell & Brew in Estes Park is my favorite small business. It’s an artisan shop for fountain pens, ink, fine paper, and other writing supplies along with craft coffee drinks. You can dine-in or takeout here. It’s owned by locals Kevin and Stacy, who happen to also be TDS customers! The business is generally open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., with varying hours during the holidays.

I’m honored to share that they are partners with us in the TDS Student Appreciation Program (T-SAP).  When I was looking for a T-SAP partner from the community, I ran into this business. They accepted the proposal with an open heart and began awarding Estes Park High School students Inkwell & Brew gift cards throughout the school year. T-SAP is a great program for keeping students engaged in academics, and this business embraces its importance.

Kevin and Stacy also offer a free book to T-SAP winners through their other business—Macdonald Book Shop.

Muddy Bees Bakery and Red Canyon Company—Hurricane, Utah
Recommended by Sarah 

Muddy Bees Bakery is the neatest, most unique bake shop I’ve ever been to. One of the primary reasons is because they have their own beehive right in the store! Muddy Bees carries a variety of breads, pastries, cookies, and cakes—including a great variety of gluten-free options to choose from. There is delicious honey to taste test, along with amazing smoothies, coffee drinks, and made -to-order sandwiches. They also carry some local knick knacks, cards, and personal care products.

Muddy Bees is best known for their massive cinnamon rolls, which were recently highlighted in an article by Only in Your State.

Red Canyon Company is an amazing supporter of local artisans. Oddly enough, my husband Andrew, and I discovered it after he installed their TDS internet!

The owners are two young ladies that are artisans and baristas themselves. The shop has everything from hanging art to pottery to handmade clothes, plus amazing coffee drinks, seasonal beverages, and steamers made with their homemade syrups and spice blends. Red Canyon also sells local snacks and goodies from Sunny Baking Company and bagels from Muddy Bees. They recently started hosting community-oriented events such as Game Board Fridays, drop-in Dungeons and Dragons Sundays, and art classes like paint nights and needle-felting.

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