As we head into the New Year, we at the Shore Update want to wish everyone a bright, healthy and happy 2016

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As we head into the New Year, we at the Shore Update want to wish everyone a bright, healthy and happy 2016. I’d also like to take a moment to reflect on a very special part of 2015. We are all about our community, our readers and the businesses we work so closely with on a daily basis. We have really spent the last year putting our hearts and souls into our “SHOP LOCAL” mantra. Those two little words are the basis of a strong community. By shopping local, we support our local businesses that in turn support our community.

Local business owners who…
Sponsor our youth sports’ teams, emergency services, recreation activities… Hold fundraisers for so many of our wonderful community organizations… Donate time and merchandise to local charities…
Employ local residents who in turn give so much back…
Have open doors and hearts as they too live in the community they work in…

Shopping local does more than keep money local. It supports the very infrastructure that make so many of us proud to call this place home. It gives us a vested interest in our community.

Shopping local is always in the forefront of our minds at the Shore Update. I understand the value of shopping local and practice what we preach every chance I get. This past Christmas, I, yet again, was beyond touched by a shop local experience.

I have such a hard time buying gifts for my teenage boys, yet alone gifts that will surprise and excite them. Michael and I decided to upgrade their iPhones for Christmas, but because of our wireless plan and the true desire to surprise our teens, we had to wait until the very last minute to pull off our mission.

I stopped in at Wireless Kinect in Kent Towne Market right before Christmas to drop off a check from Christmas by the Bay. They were super busy, and I hadn’t planned on meeting the new owner, yet alone pulling off what felt like an impossible Christmas miracle. Tu-sean came out from the back, and immediately I could tell how genuinely friendly he was. We chit-chatted for a second and before I knew it, he offered to help with the phones. I left there with a big smile and yet one more reassurance as to why shopping local truly is incredible.

Then Michael went in Christmas Eve to pick up the phones. Tu-sean said, “Please email/call me Christmas day when the boys open them. I’ll activate them from my laptop at home.” When Michael told me that and showed me the gift he threw in for their new phones, I was just amazed, “Christmas Day, really??!!”

Then Christmas Day, he responded almost instantly to my email that our mission was complete… two ecstatic teens. In trying to activate them, there was a hurdle that he figured out how to temporarily work around, “I can deal with it afterwards. I want you to give the phones to them as a gift so go ahead and switch sim cards around for now,” Tu-sean wrote.

There is truly nowhere else you could find service and care like that… that is the essence of shopping local: Business owners who care and go above and beyond.

So, if you have no other resolution as the New Year approaches, please be sure to make an effort to shop local in 2016.

Here’s to 2016, Cheri