Small Business Saturday Celebrated in D.C.

Retail holiday conceived in 2010 by American Express

Sunday, Nov 25, 2012  |  Updated 8:21 AM EDT
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There's a push to get people out shopping on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and to get them out of the malls and into small stores in the community.  Derrick Ward reports.

There's a push to get people out shopping on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and to get them out of the malls and into small stores in the community. Derrick Ward reports.

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Black Friday actually began on Thursday night this year – much to the delight of millions of shoppers – but not all of the attention is on the nation’s big retailers.

On what's become known as Small Business Saturday, small, locally-based shops are offering plenty of deals for holiday shoppers across the country today. American Express started the retail holiday in 2010, and it's caught on at a time when smaller, independent stores face competition from big retailers in both physical and online form.

“When you shop at a small business, you really are doing more than just making a purchase, you’re really building the economy for your city,” said Marie Johns, Deputy Administrator of the Small Business Administration as she visited businesses along Barracks Road in SE Washington.

According to Johns, two out of every three new private sector jobs in the U.S. are from small businesses.

In other places throughout the DC area, shoppers planned to flood a local business for what’s called a “Cash Mob” at the Now and Then in Takoma Park. In a “Cash Mob,” an organized group of people fills the store to spend at least $10 at the small business.

Even President Obama was among the shoppers Saturday, as he and his daughters visited One More Page Books on North Westmoreland Street in Arlington.

Meantime, American Express cardholders across the country got cash back for shopping at certain stores.

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