New holiday programs help safely support small shops in OTR

Published: Nov. 18, 2020 at 6:39 PM EST
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CINCINNATI (FOX19) - With the holidays right around the corner, the Over-the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce is working to make sure there are opportunities for you and your family to shop local.

The Chamber is asking the community to come out, enjoy new and old holiday outdoor programs, and help beloved businesses and vendors in OTR stay afloat.

After all, it is the season of giving.

OTR is a special neighborhood to visit all-year-round. There is the historic Findlay Market and so many quaint businesses to shop.

But now more than ever they are counting on the community for support due to the pandemic.

“We need you to keep these special places alive,” explains OTR Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kelly Adamson. “Our business owners have created amazing wonderful spaces over the past couple of months and years. So now is our time to return the favor to them.”

Therefore, Adamson says they are launching unique and safe ways to support small shops.

One is a holiday in the mug promotion where you get a voucher for drink specials at OTR bars. Homemaker Bar owners are also offering creative holiday gift options to welcome people in.

“We’re doing online cocktail glasses, we’re doing Zoom cocktail parties,” said the co-owners of Homemaker Bar, Catherine Manabat and Julia Petiprin. “We have online options; carryout options and we want to continue to create those experiences.”

When a local gift purchase is made and given to a special person, owners say it’s a triple win.

“When you buy from a local small company, an actual person is doing a happy dance,” said Simply Zero owner Rachel Felous. “We can say that enough when you shop with us online or when you come visit us in our stores.”

Socially distanced festivities will also add to the holiday spirit.

From expanding outdoor dining, Santa visits, and pop-up shops at Washington Park to small business Saturday.

OTR business leaders hope these new options help families create new traditions while also helping some of these stores end the year on a high note.

Next week, the OTR Chamber of Commerce will also launch a new website called “Found Cincinnati.” It is a one-stop-shop app that has specials, events, and store promotions daily.

It is meant to help relieve holiday fatigue.

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