Shop Small: Black Hills Pt. 3
NewsCenter1’s Calvin Cutler traveled through the Black Hills and spoke to business owners about why small business plays a role in South Dakota’s economy. This is the third and final part of Shop Small: Black Hills. Watch the entire series here.
Rapid City has seen substantial business growth in the past 10 years and the development of a flourishing downtown, made up largely of family-owned businesses.
The city’s 12,000 businesses support not just the flow of money in a community, but also its function. Many businesses are involved with local nonprofits and community outreach programs.
Linda Rabe, the president of the Rapid City Area Chamber of Commerce, says locally-owned businesses play a vital role in helping the community develop.
“Small businesses are the ones that support your local youth organizations. They’re the ones that support your nonprofits,” said Rabe.
Other than making money, some family-owned businesses bring the community together as well by connecting over shared interests. At businesses like Roamin’ Around, the product is also a lifestyle.
At Roamin’ Around, shoppers will find multitudes of billboards fliers about upcoming hikes, equipment swaps, and other programs for the community put on through his Roamin’ Around.
“We organize events and take people out on hikes,” said Jon Machacek, the owner of Roamin’ Around. “In the winter here, we’ll be taking people out snowshoeing – no charge – and getting any age group out hiking and enjoying the Black Hills
According to Tim Rangitsch, the owner of Acme Bicycles, owning a business is not just about turning a profit, but also making sure their trade stays alive locally.
“We’re highly involved with trail advocacy and trails in the Black Hills,” said Rangitsch. “There’s a lot of good trails and a lot of good riding, because there’s a lot of work that gets done. Your local bike shops are the ones that are going to make that happen.”
Some Rapid City businesses have perfected the method of having businesses and consumers work together to create a community of hikers or bikers. This is something which big box stores and online retailers just can’t do.
“Any of these special retail sports or hobbies, your local retailer is going to be more involved and help be more of that for the local person,” said Rangitsch.
Experts say people should shop local on Small Business Saturday, coming up Nov. 25, and try to shop local on an everyday basis.
“If you shop local, and the money goes to those small businesses, then they end up growing and prospering and hiring more people which all is just a circular effect which helps us all,” said Rabe.