Small Business Saturday and Small Brewery Sunday are important. But why?
Small-business owners are your friends, your neighbors, your family. You may even be one yourself. Small-business owners are the backbone of our society, integral cogs that keep the machine churning. When they succeed, we all succeed. Our communities and neighborhoods are better because of them. Rising tides lift all boats, right? And when customers spend their dollars at local establishments, they actively participate in building a sense of community and pride.
Brewery owners are small-business owners, hence the importance of Small Business Saturday on Nov. 25 and Small Brewery Sunday on Nov. 26, a weekend that celebrates the local entrepreneurial spirit. The annual celebration encourages beer lovers to support their local breweries, brewpubs and taprooms – all small businesses that contribute to communities and economies during the holiday season and beyond.
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And a weekend like this is as important as ever locally after a year that saw the closing of West Shore Brewing Co. and Thin Man Brewery’s Elmwood Avenue and Chandler Street locations. Additionally, Community Beer Works is set to close its Seventh Street taproom and Lafayette Brewing Co. will close at year’s end.
“Supporting your local brewery is important every day, however, Small Brewery Sunday is a great day to highlight the importance of those local breweries to every community in New York State,” said Paul Leone, executive director of the New York State Brewers Association. “It’s been tough for [some of] those breweries, this year’s Small Brewery Sunday is more important than ever.”
According to the Brewer’s Association, overall U.S. beer volume sales were down 3% in 2022, while craft brewer volume sales remained on par with 2021 with retail sales of craft increasing 5%, to $28.4 billion. Craft now accounts for 24.6% of the $115 billion U.S. beer market.
One major reason that shopping, and drinking, local is so vital, as Resurgence Brewing’s president and owner Jeff Ware says, is that the dollars you spend at a small business or local brewery stay local, and go directly back into the community. The economic impact of small businesses cannot be overstated. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, small businesses create two out of every three new jobs in the United States. The bottom line is, your dollars help create jobs when you choose to shop local.
“It is never a bad time to support local,” Ware said. “Those dollars spent stay in our neighborhoods. All of the people employed at Resurgence live within 20 minutes of the brewery. Even better, you do not need to sacrifice quality supporting your local breweries. A variety of great beer is being produced locally with very unique taproom experiences. Make it a brewery crawl.”
Whether you visit a local taproom to sit down and order a pint or a flight, grab a crowler or fill a growler to go, or take home cans or bottles, your hard-earned dollars are helping to create jobs and keep your friends and neighbors employed, all while further strengthening our beer scene.
Small Business Saturday serves as a powerful reminder of the impact that individual choices can have on the vitality of local economies, while Small Brewery Sunday provides an opportunity for beer lovers to celebrate and support the artisans who pour their heart and soul into every brew. By designating a weekend to these smaller establishments, these events promote the importance of community, local economies and the unique contributions made by independent breweries and small business owners alike.