“If they don’t support the local bicycle shop, who is going to fix their bicycle?” Kane said. “If you want someone to fix your Harley Davidson, you better support the Harley Davidson guy, so he is going to be here to fix it.” Small News Saturday is Nov. 27, a time for shoppers to support local and get a head start on holiday shopping. From Kane’s perspective, having the support of local consumers is not just critical for the business – it’s even more critical for the consumer. ‘No middle ground’
Kane, 67, is now seeing a three to five year backlog on bikes and bike parts as the supply chain continues to be affected by the pandemic. Lack of inventory has become an issue for The Bicycle Shop. With Small News Saturday and the holiday shopping season expected to bring more sales, the already short supply of products could be exacerbated by December.
“They totally depleted the inventory,” Kane said. “Factories can’t keep up with sales.” “This bicycle boom (during COVID) was worldwide,” Kane said, who owns The Bicycle Shop, now located on N. Marine Boulevard in Jacksonville. “Everybody was riding bikes because they couldn’t go to the gym, they were stuck at home and wanted to get out.”
The local chamber is a Neighborhood Champion for the “Shop Small” initiative from American Express, meaning you may see some fancy posters, stickers, bags or other items around town promoting Small News Saturday. Shopping local is important because it’s the local business owners who help support local causes, Leagon said. “I’m hearing things are really good or we are struggling,” Leagon said. “There seems to be no middle ground.”
Over the past year it’s been feast or famine for a lot of businesses around the county, chamber president Laurette Leagon said. Started by American Express in 2010, Small News Saturday, the day after Black Friday, is a day the Jacksonville-Onslow Chamber of Commerce is encouraging people to shop at locally-owned businesses, especially those in need of support amid the aftershocks of the pandemic.
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