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Indy merchants gear up for Small Business Saturday

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Businesses large and small are hoping for a holiday shopping rush, but Small Business Saturday is dedicated to supporting small local merchants. 

“It’s critical,” said Julie Johnson, manager of Silver in the City, of the holiday. “If we don’t have a successful season, the business then struggles. It’s out most important time of the year.” 

Silver in the City is one of several small businesses participating in Massachusets Avenue’s Small Business Saturday celebration. For the occasion, Silver in the City is offering a 10 percent discount. Johnson worked in big box and luxury retail and says the experience at a small business is part of the fun. 

“We’re a very tight-knit family. We get to really know our customers and we really work individually with those small vendors that come in and it’s really fun to have that touch in everything and be very involved in the business and buying decisions,” she said. 

Customers we talked to agree.

“I live up north in Frankfort but I love coming down to Silver in the City,” said loyal customer James Ramos. “It’s a great store, lot of cool things, small store, small-owned so enjoy it here.”

Silver in the City is on its 18th Christmas and count on those loyal customers.

Pumkinfish, another small business in downtown’s Mass Ave cultural district, opened a little over a year ago. 

“It’s got its challenges,” said Pumkinfish owner Will Action. “Mass Ave is definitely busy with bars and restaurants and parking’s always an issue for us, but luckily we have a lot of loyal customers and Small Business Saturday is the busiest day of the year for us.” 

Pumkinfish has few popular items, including “The Happy Painter” Bob Ross stuff and bath bombs, they’re counting on to bring people in the door. 

“It’s very important,” Acton said of Small Business Saturday. “It’s our best day of the year. We definitely see the most amount of people through our store and it just helps us to survive.”

Pumkinfish is donating 10 percent of sales Saturday to the FACE Low-Cost Animal Clinic

Mass Ave is having a lot of fun events for Small Business Saturday. They’re giving away swag bags for the first customers starting at 9 a.m., Santa Claus will visit the Indianapolis Fire Department Museum at 2 p.m.