“Buying local” does not just refer to purchasing locally cultivated foods and wines.
It includes shopping at small local businesses and purchasing items produced and handcrafted in our own cities and towns.
In Langley, the art and artisan business community is slowly growing, but most of these businesses rely on self-promotion and do need the support of their community to prosper.
In 2010, Canadians imported more than $637,000,000 in visual art related goods, the vast majority being from the United States.
This figure does not include books or other printed materials, film, video, or music.
If we all made the attempt to purchase Canadian-made goods over imported goods, could you imagine how much stronger our dollar would be?
$637 million dollars is a lot of money.
Why are we buying these goods made south-of-the-border that could be purchased in our own backyard from our own family, friends and neighbours – improving our own economy?
Where do you plan to Christmas shop this year?
If you see yourself at the shopping mall last-minute, chances are you are one of the many people who hate Christmas shopping.
The packed parking lots and crazed drivers, overwhelming hordes of people, and never-ending line-ups are enough to give anyone a panic attack.
“Makin’ a list, and checkin’ it twice” after Dec. 15 is a guaranteed disaster.
Plan ahead – start a list on your smartphone or personal notebook and work on it year round. Explore our local shops. Enjoy a stroll down downtown Langley’s one-way and check out the fun mixture of stores for all ages.
Plan a day taking in our province’s birthplace, the village of Fort Langley where art and history are celebrated.
Subscribe to your local city’s Facebook pages for upcoming events, festivals, and craft fairs: Discover Downtown Langley, Tourism Langley, and Fort Langley Village all have pages that are kept current with the happenings around town.
Do you still plan on running to the mall last minute to do your shopping?
Plan ahead and explore your options. Try to buy goods made by local, creative and talented individuals over south-of-the-line or factory produced goods under possible brow-raising conditions.
Avoid the over-commercialization of Christmas by supporting your local community and enjoy the hunt for that special gift – something thoughtful, unique, affordable and made to last.
Stephanie Shanklin, via email