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Business Beat: Local merchants support Smalll Business Saturday

Among the many things Boulder City is known for is its unique and quaint business community. And after the hustle and bustle of preparing and serving a family feast for Thanksgiving and braving the crowds for Black Friday holiday shopping, the city’s merchants are offering a welcome respite as they mark Small Business Saturday.

Throughout the day, local business owners will welcome shoppers to their establishments, with some offering holiday specials.

Small Business Saturday was started in 2010 by American Express as a way to give merchants a boost in the middle of the nation’s recession. The idea was to encourage people to consider small, local businesses for the holiday shopping.

Included among the business owners marking Small Business Saturday is a group that has formed the Uptown Boulder City Parkway Merchants, an informal collaboration of businesses lining the west end of the thoroughfare.

The group is presenting a Holiday Merchant Stroll from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 30.

Lisa Savy, owner of Boulder City Candy Co., said she wanted to find a way to help area residents take advantage of Small Business Saturday and knocked on the doors of her fellow business owners in Red Mountain Plaza and those across the street in the Boulder Dam Plaza to see if there was interest in participating in a special event.

“I will be setting up a tent next to Mom’s Hot Dogs,” she said.

The tent, which will feature items from her store, will serve as a check-in point for the holiday stroll. Shoppers can visit the participating merchants to obtain raffle tickets for a prize drawing at the end of the day, she said. Tickets can be dropped off for the drawing, which will be held at 5 p.m.

Each of the participating businesses will be offering some type of discount or special.

Participating merchants are Boulder City Candy Co., Desert Adventures, Flightlinez Bootleg Canyon, Mom’s Hot Dogs, My Four Sons Comics/Cards/Games, Ragtown Tattoo, Roberto’s Taco Shop, Square 1 Gallery and Treasure Finds.

“More of us these days are doing our holiday shopping online, but it’s important to remember when shopping at many of these online resellers the money leaves our local community. If we want to keep our hard-earned money local, then we have to support our local businesses. I hope Boulder City residents will join me in braving the chilly weather this weekend to show our support and shop local,” said Christina Toole of Seed Branding Agency, which helped the merchants create a website and marketing materials for the holiday stroll.

Savy said she hopes the coalition of business owners will continue after the holiday season.

Longson recognized for service

Sue Longson, advocacy specialist for Boulder Dam Credit Union, was presented with the Distinguished Service Award by the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues.

The award, which recognizes credit union professionals’ service to the industry within the past three years, was presented during the Ontario, California-based organization’s REACH conference held Oct. 27-30 in Monterey, California.

Longson was recognized for her work within the credit union industry, which spans more than 30 years, and her efforts in the arena of advocacy.

“Her leadership skills, personal communication style, and passion for integrity have endeared her to hundreds of elected officials over the years,” said Eric Estes, CEO and president of the Boulder Dam Credit Union.

Richard Bryan, former Nevada governor and retired senator, said Longson is one of the most effective advocates he has known. “She’s someone who takes the time to cultivate personal relationships with many of the decision-makers in the state.”

Longson’s association with credit unions began when she was young. Her grandfather, Lance Barden, founded hundreds of credit unions. His 1,000th credit union was the first one in Nevada: Sierra Nevada Power FCU. Her father, Steve, and mother, Shirley, also led credit unions.

Longson got her start at her mother’s credit union in La Puente, California, in 1973, working as a teller and filing at age 15. She eventually would head her own credit union. During her career, Longson has been a member of the boards of the California and Nevada leagues, including serving two years as chairman of the Nevada league. She also served on the political action committees in California and Nevada.

“My ambition has always been to make a difference for credit unions and credit union members. It feels wonderful that peers believe that I have,” she said.

restaurant being remodeled

The Taco Bell at 1600 Boulder City Parkway is being remodeled. During construction, the dining room is closed, but the drive-thru remains open.

According to Boulder City’s Economic Development Coordinator Raffi Festekjian, the total value of the renovations is approximately $200,000. The improvements include making the restrooms bigger and ADA compliant, updating the decor throughout the building and installing a new drive-thru clearance bar and canopy.

“Over the last year, the amount of commercial reinvestment activity in Boulder City has been very encouraging,” he said.

Festekjian said the company did not submit a timeline for the project.

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