Chicago Launches ‘Buy Local' Campaign

As the holidays near Chicago officials want residents to pay extra attention to what they buy.

The city’s holiday "Buy Local" campaign launched Friday, asking residents to shift some of their spending to local businesses.

The holiday campaign, Unwrap Chicago, is part of a larger campaign, "Eat, Drink & Buy Local 365," which encourages residents to pledge to spend at least $1 each day for a year to local stores.

“Small businesses are the engine for our economic recovery,” said City Treasurer Stephanie Neely. "Chicagoans can save gas and create local jobs by shopping and spending where they live."

Neely was joined by several Chicago aldermen and business advocates in the Friday launch, which encouraged residents to “eat, drink and buy local" during the holiday season.

"It's not asking you to shop exclusively at local stores, but asking you to shift a portion of your holiday spending dollars, then 365 just keeps it going all year long," said owner of Little Independent Lesley Tweedie. "We appreciate the support from the City of Chicago. It's wonderful to be a business owner in this community."

Neely said $1 a day to local stores would inject nearly $100 million into the local economy, noting locally owned businesses recirculate 70 percent of their earnings into the local economy.

“One of the things I like most about this campaign is it's not to do everything but to do something,” said Amanda Neely, owner of Overflow Coffee Bar.

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