Apex business owner brought to tears from community support during Small Business Saturday

APEX, N.C. (WTVD) -- The holiday shopping season did not stop with Black Friday, it continues with Small Business Saturday. It's a day dedicated to showing support to locally owned businesses that need support, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many of these small business owners say they need a strong holiday season if they want to be here next year, due to the financial hit many businesses have taken from the pandemic.

Pam Thorpe, the owner of The Rusty Bucket in downtown Apex along Salem Street says the pandemic is rough on their business.

"Back in the spring, we were closed for three months. That's hard to recover from when you don't have the revenue coming for three months, then as soon as the numbers started going back up again, it really slowed down," said Thorpe.

In fact, it's been so slow, Thorpe says the future of their business is unknown, "People just need to remember that we don't have the resources that a big box company does and we really need their support to be able to stay viable."

The good news, Thorpe says this week's business picked up when people specifically started looking to support local businesses. She adds, "I just appreciate people have shown up this week and I can't tell you how many times I've been brought to tears people showing the love and support."

A neighboring business, Sophie & Mollie's Boutique, echoes Thorpe's words saying the support has been great not only on Small Business Saturday but the whole week.

Ali Roberts with the boutique says, "These last few days have been so busy and we've been so thankful for all the support. It's been so great to see the community come together and support all these small businesses."

Businesses are providing hand sanitizer and requiring masks to make sure shoppers feel safe and comfortable coming into their stores to support local.

"I think it's extremely important as we are not sure what going to happen the next couple of months with COVID so seeing this support has been very helpful for our business," Roberts said.

It's been a strong day for Small Business Saturday for many locally-owned shops and they say they are hoping the support continues throughout the holiday season and beyond.
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