More than 80 Issaquah business and community members gathered at a Nov. 17 luncheon of the Greater Issaquah Chamber of Commerce to launch the “Shop Issaquah” program, which organizers hope will help support the local economy and promote Issaquah businesses.
A goal of the program is also to communicate the critical role business plays in quality of life, city services, jobs and overall economic vitality.
“We can make a huge difference by banding together, supporting each other and promoting our community and our businesses” said Tony Rehn, General Manager of Evergreen Ford.
Rehn is an Issaquah Chamber board member and one of the individuals organizing the Shop Issaquah campaign.
The Shop Issaquah Program will help promote awareness on the importance of shopping locally to support jobs, families, crucial services and the local economy.
The program will also help provide additional exposure for Issaquah businesses to provide access to new customers.
The program was organized with input from a number of businesses, support from the City of Issaquah as well as all major local media outlets including the Issaquah Press, The Reporter and IS and Beyond Magazine.
“The success of our local economic recovery depends in large part on the success of our businesses” said Chamber CEO Matthew Bott “Businesses provide jobs, commerce, tax revenue, livelihoods for our citizens, critical services such as public safety, parks and recreation support, etc.”
As part of the Shop Issaquah program, the Issaquah Chamber is developing a Web site to help local businesses promote their special offers directly to local consumers.
The Chamber is also developing tools that Issaquah consumers can use to quickly assess the approximate amount of commerce they spend outside the community, with an encouragement to return this spending to Issaquah.
“The Chamber hopes that this information will help encourage consumers to re-discover the outstanding goods, services, products and businesses we have right in our backyard,” Bott said. “If this program helps save even a few jobs, a few small businesses or simply brings consumers a greater awareness of the options available locally, we will count it as a major success.”
At the lauch, more than 20 local businesses showcased their holiday specials including businesses as diverse as Gemini Fish Market, Costco, Winestyles, Tutta Bella, Bake’s Place Jazz Supper Club, ArtEast, and White Horse Promotional Products.
The luncheon was sponsored by Fern Life Center.