Shopping local was a huge thing for all of America when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit. I would hope this is something that is still a passion for many in our community.

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We saw small businesses get the pandemic bump, but as the world starts returning to normal, many might be on their old schedule. I know I am guilty of this. I was going to shops that were small and closer to my routes like Coffee House of Hel, Coffee Waffle, and Amber's Coffee Bar.

Once I started having to go in to work more, I was getting lazy with my routine and didn't want to be late. Unless I had gift cards, that was the only way I was stopping at restaurants on my way home. I know I am not the only one who fell back into this pattern.

Not only do small businesses have to worry about customers changing up their schedules, but the ever-changing of competing restaurants. A big name to come into the coffee game is Starbucks, as they announced their arrival at the Eastlake Marketplace.

No one is surprised about this announcement since Starbucks and McDonald's restaurants are practically everywhere you turn. People will waste time in lines just for the convenience of these big named stores, but is it really a convenience?

The great people at Amber's Coffee Bar used the news of Starbucks at Eastlake as a way to remind us all of the importance of small businesses with this Facebook post below.

Reading this helps put some hope back into your heart and hopefully some money into your hand to go out and support small businesses. You get a sense of love when you enter a small business and they just light up at the sight of you in their business. Those big-name stores just see you as another wallet. When small businesses take the time to help the community meet their neighbor police and firemen, you know you can take pride in your purchase and Amber's Coffee Bar is a great example of that.

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