Small Business Saturday is Nov. 30 — sandwiched in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday — encouraging consumers to shop within their own communities.

Small Business Saturday was started by credit card company American Express on Nov. 27, 2010. Nancy Adams, executive director of Downtown Summit, the day has caught on and the biggest advantage she sees is the promotion of people thinking about shopping small.

She said since most downtowns and small businesses don't have the pocketbooks necessary for large-scale advertising, having a major corporation like American Express campaign on a national, local and state level has been very helpful.

Small Business Saturday is at an advantage, being in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Adams said.

"For example, in Summit there's live music around the downtown area during Small Business Saturday to create a nice atmosphere," Adams said. "On the following Saturdays, there are horse and carriage rides to create that holiday atmosphere that people enjoy."

There are many perks to shopping local, Adams said. If downtowns are healthy, their communities' property values are in much better shape, she said.

When shopping this holiday season, Adams said, if someone needs a convenient drop off or wants to order something over the phone or online, first check with a local small business to see if they can help before going online.

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