Last Saturday night there was a Moonlight Madness/Christmas Walk along the main business street in Brazil. The event was promoted by Lori Brown and Tracy Chiles of Seasoned Wick and participated in by several businesses. I really did wish them well in this, and think making it an annual event will in time make it a valuable community event. However, the sole contribution of Computer Central was to make sure our Christmas lights stayed on until 1 a.m. -- I don't stay up that the late for nobody.
In five-plus years of these read-by-very-few blogs an attempt has been made to not repeat something already said. Some things, though, are worth repeating (harping on?). One of these things is my repeated theme of shopping local. What follows has been blogged, unnoticed, before.
From "Buy Brazil!" posted Dec. 4, 2008
... Running into "the big city" for recreational shopping was not always so. Back in the day the City of Brazil was a boomtown of the highest quality. One local merchant or another met every need; and if all else failed there were the variety stores. Then the Interstate highway and Wal-Mart came and the world changed. The City of Brazil is certainly not alone in experiencing the changes which came with entering the 22nd Century. Somehow in all the change we got the idea we'd have to do our shopping in the "big city Mall" -- which was now only minutes away. But, even if Brazil ain't what she was, there is still plenty more to come.
... In lists provided by the Chamber of Commerce I learned there are over 400 business entities listed in Clay County, including manufacturers, home and part-time businesses. Sure, with the passage of time the people have changed, and what a local business offers today may have been inconceivable 50 or 100 years ago. But, as long as there are this many small businesses in Brazil, we are still something of a boomtown. Clay County is dotted with "towns" that became merely crossroads when local business of the time lost its local support.
... There is no reason, either, to think that if you can't find it at the local Walmart you'll have to go to "the big city." Maybe it's just a matter of asking the local merchant for help. In his autobiography Made in America Sam Walton, founder of Walmart, contends it is not really true local business can't compete with Walmart. He says Walmart can never compete with independent business people because Walmart can never have specialized knowledge or extensive inventory of any particular product line. He says in part, "The little personal touch is so important for an independent merchant because no matter how hard we try to duplicate it -- and we try awfully hard -- we can't really do it" (pg. 229).
... Recreational Christmas shopping can be fun enough, a lot of stuff is out there to entice. May I suggest, though, most of the stuff you really need can probably be found right here in our town. At least it's worth a shot. Buying locally adds to jobs available and taxes collected. And, local shopping encourages even more small business to add to the local offerings. It seems to me anyone shopping in "the big city" for things as easily purchased locally forfeits the right to say there is no future for Brazil Indiana.
Just in case you're the one who's read this far and you still don't get my point -- Buy Brazil!