BALTIMORE COUNTY — One of the best times of the year for people to support their community’s locally owned stores and small businesses is here yet again!
This Saturday is Small Business Saturday — a day dedicated to supporting your Essex, White Marsh, Middle River, Perry Hall and other area shops, restaurants and businesses.
Setting aside a specific day to shop local businesses is a reminder and celebration of the local businesses that help to foster a sustainable economy. The money spent locally stays in the community and benefits Eastern Baltimore County. Plus, shoppers can find a one-of-a-kind gift that can’t be bought anywhere else.
There are many businesses in the area offering special deals and events on Saturday, Nov. 30 and throughout the entire week.
We have compiled a list of just some of the small businesses in the area that are participating in this special shopping week. We added as many as we could, but this is not an exhaustive list!
Makers of Maryland: 8153 Honeygo Blvd, Unit J at The Avenue in White Marsh
This pop-up shop is home to over 30 different local artists’ products. Creative decorations, jewelry, clothes, unique knick-knacks and more can be found at this boutique — but only for a limited time.
This pop-up shop is only open from November 2 to December 24. The shop is open from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Fridays, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays.
Founder of Makers of Maryland Stephanie Persichitti started the group about a year ago after wanting to expand her circle of Maryland artists.
”The end of 2018 was coming quite quickly and I was thinking heavily about how to grow my circle in the new year. I had a small and stable community but wanted something more,” Persichitti wrote on the group’s website.
Persichitti then started a Makers of Maryland page on Facebook and Instagram, which received a lot of positive feedback quickly.
”I kept hearing, ‘This is great! We need this!’, ‘We really need a community, you’re starting something great,’ and from then on it has been my mission to serve the Makers,” she wrote.
The Makers of Maryland pop-up shop will hold several events this Sunday that can help people get in the holiday spirit and shop from local vendors as well.
On Sunday from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., Makers of Maryland will host ‘Om for the Holidays,’ a 60-minute restorative yin yoga practice for all levels. The cost is $10.
Following yoga, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. people can place custom ornament orders and watch Darra from Dear Darling Design Studio paint and letter them live.
Lastly, Makers of Maryland will host a DIY paper flower workshop. People will be hand cutting the petals and using hot glue during the process and at the end of the workshop participants will go home with an assembled paper flower in the color and shape of their choice. All materials will be provided and the cost is $40 per person.
Alice’s Family Restaurant: 2909 Eastern Blvd., Middle River
Alice’s has only been open for a year, but has a hefty lineup of specials this week. People can save all the cooking for Thanksgiving day and enjoy a prepared meal at Alice’s the day before on Wednesday, Nov. 27. People can purchase one entree and get the second one at half price and can choose from a variety of seafood, pasta and country-style food.
Alice’s will also be available to make all-inclusive and a la carte Thanksgiving meals for customers on Thursday, November, 28. The restaurant’s full menu will also be available on Thanksgiving Day. You really can get anything you want at Alice’s restaurant!
Alice’s will also have a gift card special on Friday, Nov. 29. Alice’s Family restaurant may be relatively new in town, but the family who runs it has been perfecting their recipes for decades. The origins of Alice’s began with the head of the family – the best chef of the household – Ms. Alice.
There are two things Ms. Alice loved most: family and good cooking. Her recipes have been a family secret passed down for a number of generations and the family continues to provide the community with the same tastes she created.
Chuck’s Comics: 530 Eastern Blvd., Essex
Chuck’s Comics was established in 1989 and has been selling comics, toys and tons of fun stuff to the fine folks of Baltimore and around the world for over 20 years.
Almost everything at Chuck’s comics will be 30 percent off on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. Frequent buyer discounts are also available.
Chuck, the owner of Chuck’s Comics, said he has worked to “refine” his marketing strategy throughout the years to compete with online gaming retailers.
”The marketplace and products are always changing, and I try to stay with the changes,” he said.
”I try to provide products and services that my customers may be interested in. In addition to comic books, I’ve added games and collectibles.”
Chuck said his store has the largest supply of comics, graphic novels and collectible figures in the state because he wanted to create a store that had “all the fun things that I was interested in.”
”I started selling and buying comics, cards, and toys at the flea market. I met a lot of people and I just kept going. One thing led to another and here we are now, 30 years later.,” Chuck said.
Essex Florist: 341 S. Marlyn Ave., Essex
Essex Florist have a large variety of Thanksgiving and Christmas themed centerpieces, bouquets, poinsettias and other floral creations for sale. The garden center has been family owned for over 70 years and say they take pride in not being a mass merchandising operation.
The original business owner was Howard Salvo, who in the 1940s built some of the original greenhouses and established Salvo Nurseries, Inc. Mr. Salvo turned management over to the current owners, who created Essex Florist and Greenhouses as a division of Salvo Nurseries Inc, and transformed the business into a full-service florist and specialized growing operation.
Mr. Salvo loved the growing business and remained interested in the operation until he passed away in 2002. Today, the business remains family-owned and operated. “For over 70 years our business has had the privilege of sharing the joys and sorrows of the people in our community,” their website says.
Essex Florist takes pride in growing their own flowers instead of buying from a larger merchandizer.
Chapel Hills Farm and Nursery: 4350 Chapel Rd., Perry Hall
This family-owned and operated business is having their Christmas Open House on Saturday, November 30 and Sunday, December 1 to carry over the merriment from Thanksgiving into the Christmas season.
People can enjoy apple cider, hot chocolate, apple cider donuts and other baked goods, as well as pick out a live Christmas tree and purchase holiday decorations.
Owner Russel Berk said he and the nursery staff work hard to provide a special atmosphere for their customers.
“People come here from all over,” Berk said. “They want to have a country experience and we are one of the only places left that can offer that around here.”
Berk has been working at the nursery all his life. His father started the business in the 1950s. Back then, the family only sold flowers and shrubs.
Over the years, the nursery started to sell local produce and baked goods, home decorations, pumpkins and pit beef. They have also opened up a petting zoo, provide seasonal haunted hayrides, Christmas sleigh rides, host an annual apple festival and fall festivals and provides school tours.