Nationwide, today is Small Business Saturday, a chance for Americans to support their local economy by spending this annual shopping weekend buying gifts at the Mom & Pop shops in their neighborhood.

Yesterday was Black Friday, the reason why I personally hate the winter holiday season.  People are lining up, pushing & shoving, trampling over others and for what?  To save money on things their loved ones really don’t need?  People are rude, there are car accidents galore, and this all comes after a day when we are supposed to be thankful for what we do have.  It is pure insanity.

Instead, I like the idea of Small Business Saturday.  Not only are you getting gifts for your loved ones but you are also helping your neighbors out by supporting their businesses.  And you can actually get better gifts, gifts that have meaning.  For example, if I wanted to get my Mom something that could only come from California, from Pasadena or the Altadena area, I would shop for her at Webster’s Fine Stationers on Lake or Vroman’s Bookstore on Colorado (or Foothill).

But one of the great things about living in Los Angeles is all of the thriving small businesses.  I have plenty of shopping options up and down Colorado in Old Town Pasadena.  There are also great shopping areas in downtown Montrose and Sierra Madre.  Or I could head over to the Eagle Rock Block Party happening today in honor of Small Business Saturday (or more details, check out an article in LA Magazine).  Or for some gifts with cultural flavor, I could take the Metro to Union Station, cross the street and check out all of the shops on Olvera Street.

So this is my new adventure today.  I am going to finish up my holiday shopping by supporting the local businesses in my area.  If you would like to do the same, you can click on this link to find out what local businesses in your area are participating in Small Business Saturday.