Journal of the San Juan Islands


‘Tis the season to shop on island | Opinion

December 11, 2012 · Updated 1:32 PM

Before you brave the mainland for your lengthy Christmas shopping list, we want you to take a moment to think about where your dollars are going. Or rather, where they are not going.

The best way to keep our islands thriving is to support local businesses. Studies show that two-thirds of every dollar spent locally stays in your community. Plus, island stores have really cool, unique merchandise that you’ll never find at a major retailer or big box store.

Gift certificates are also a fun option. Everyone gets their hair cut. Many you know a few people who would love receiving a therapeutic massage.

How about a membership to a health club or other fitness studio? An oil change, perhaps? Dinner out at a restaurant or coffee from a local cafe? One week’s worth of cleaning services? Or maybe even a subscription to a weekly, local newspaper?

On the next two Saturdays, or at least one of them, give yourself a shopping present: skip the crowded ferries and the mainland mall mash and shop Friday Harbor.

On Dec. 15, before the Lighted Boat Parade, or on Dec. 22 before the Christmas TV specials, take your time to find the right book or the right fishing reel or toy at a local store.

And don’t forget about the excellent art, fine jewelry and fibercrafts created right here by island artists, and available right outside your doorstep — with no charge for shipping.

We understand there are some big ticket items that simply cannot be found here. But for everything else — and there is a lot — look for what you need right here.

It is one of the greatest gifts you can give to the place you call home — and your neighbor, Yule Shoppe.


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