BEREA, Ohio (WOIO) - While thousands of Clevelanders took to stores for Black Friday, Small Business Saturday helps highlight local shops that hold their own surprises.
“Spend time not just in the malls,” Dolf Kamper, owner of Suburban Clock and Repair in Berea, said. “Discover your small town, see if there might be a store there that you might not have though of.”
Several businesses on Front Street were open, full of possible gifts for friends and family members this holiday season.
Danielle McCrae is the co-owner of The Shoppe. The variety store has been in operation since 1972, and McCrae and her mother have been in charge of the location for the past three years. McCrae says the customer service sets the shop apart from other chain stores.
“You get a more personal experience,” she said, “actually coming in and being able to talk to somebody and it’s just more personal.”
Other stores included Tilma, a catholic bookstore. The operator, Jan-Marie Shannon, enjoys the different kinds of customers that walk into the small house.
“We have people that come as far away from as Ashtabula and Geauga Medina counties. They say it’s worth the drive to come here,” she said.
Sometimes, the best gifts can be the ones you do not expect, such as Kamper’s clocks and other mechanical items in his shop.
“It just adds something alive to your house. It’s more than just something stagnant that hangs on your wall, or sits on your mantle,” he said.
Despite the popularity of events such as Black Friday, business owners like Kamper are confident that local products are still popular.
“I think there is a growing awareness of small business,” he said. “It does seem like people want to be more involved in their community and be in the community and go to physical stores to see people and to talk to people.”