Small Business Saturday 2020 is on November 28th, marking the 11th annual Small Business Saturday. Last year, shoppers came together in full force to support their local communities, and Small Business Saturday hit a record high with an estimated $19.6 billion in reported spending.

This year surviving COVID-19 has become the sole mission of many small businesses.

Despite the challenges, I have learned that local small businesses are resourceful and resilient. Small businesses are pivoting and adjusting to meet their customers’ needs across the country and right here in the Lower Rio Grande Valley District.

Small Business Saturday is an opportunity to show support for those brave entrepreneurs weathering the pandemic, growing the local economy, providing jobs, and supporting many local initiatives and organizations.

I urge shoppers to find ways to shop small on Small Business Saturday and year-round. Look for online offerings from your favorite mom-and-pop stores and restaurants. Be an ambassador for small businesses by reminding your family, friends, and neighbors to shop and dine small, even if it’s curbside, purchase gift cards from local small businesses, invite friends and family to experience your favorite small businesses for themselves, or by sharing your “shop small” stories on social media using #ShopSmall.

This year, there is no doubt that small businesses have faced unprecedented challenges. But, if Small Business Saturday’s record-breaking sales, year after year, are any indicator of America’s ‘shop small spirit,’ then no doubt we will once again hit record numbers.

Small businesses are the engine of our national economy. Today, there are 31.7 million small businesses in the United States. About half of all-American workers are either employed by a small business or own a small business. These businesses create two out of three net new private-sector jobs in America, helping spur economic growth in communities across our country and add vibrance and strength to our nation.

Editor’s Note: The above guest column was penned by Angela R. Burton, who serves as the Small Business Administration’s Lower Rio Grande Valley District Director. Burton oversees the agency’s programs and services in 14 counties to include 180,000 small business firms. The district is comprised of a diverse landscape encompassing international ports of entry, beaches, deep seaports, rural communities, and metropolitan cities. The guest column appears in The Rio Grande Guardian with the approval of the author. A photo of the author accompanies this guest column.

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