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Shop Small, Shop Local

The holiday shopping season is now here and many people will, no doubt, flock to the shopping centers, big-box stores, malls and online to grab up the doorbusters and pick over the other specials—items mostly likely having rolled off some assembly line in some factory in some faraway locale.

Now with Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday in our rearview mirror, shoppers will get back to their lists of those they need to get gifts for, and we hope they consider our downtown businesses by shopping local and, one better, buying locally made. You will be helping our smaller local businesses that put your neighbors to work. At the same time, you will help reward the local talented craftspeople who turn out beautiful gift items that your loved ones, friends, and associates will enjoy all the more because of the individual touch of the gifts.

Don’t forget about our gift card matching Buy One Get One (BOGO) program—Ave Bucks—where we will match $25 toward a $50 gift card purchase or we will match $50 towards a $100 gift card purchase that may be used at participating businesses. You may purchase your gift cards at https://app.yiftee.com/gift-card/the-ave-bucks-vineland

The Ave Bucks Gift Cards may be split between any of the businesses or may be used all at one until your card is exhausted. At press time, the following locations are participating in this program: Rair Custom Graphics, Al’s Shoes, Kacee Ray’s Sports Bar & Club, DeSoto Jewelers, Kura, Alex’s Pizza, Tuque Restaurant, Spot At The Ave, La Chi Massage, NAPA Auto Parts, Cilantro Mexican Restaurant, Vegans Are Us, Hernando’s Hometown Pharmacy and Cakes By Me. Check the website as we add more businesses.

Vineland has stores and vendors that stock locallymmade items for a wide variety of uses and tastes. For example, in the heart of downtown Vineland, at 618 E. Landis Avenue, is The Spot, a marketplace containing over 80 independent shops—boutiques and vendors selling arts and crafts, antiques, vintage and homemade items, and jewelry.

“I don’t think that you will find so much of a variety of locally made and handmade items under one roof as you will find here,” said The Spot’s manager, Robin Hope. “It’s ideal and convenient for choosing the gift that’s a little different and shows the talent of some very talented artists and artisans.”

Our downtown shopping district also boasts other great retailers for gift giving, including Al’s Shoes, DeSoto Jewelers, Landis Flower Shop, NAPA Auto Parts, Health Food Plus, BOOST Mobile, Metro PCS, Cricket Wireless, Lauro Jewelers, Rienzi Bridal, and Cheryl’s Uniforms, and Cornerstone Christian Bookstore.

Consider also a gift card for one of more than 15 fabulous restaurants or salons and haircare shops or tickets for a show at the Landis Theater.

You avoid the traffic and long lines at the bigger stores, and you put money into the hands of the local people. Support Vineland’s local businesses and look for locally made items to make your gift-giving extra special.