Shopping at home saves money, pays off all year round

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We see it all the time. Parents work tirelessly to raise funds for their school's extracurricular activities. Citizens organize dinners to help finance new playground equipment in the city park. Volunteers contribute hundreds of hours to make improvements to their churches. Residents offer to serve on boards and committees to provide expertise for community causes they believe in. Hard-earned dollars are donated to non-profit organizations for the benefit of various community groups.

The reason people get involved is that they have a strong affection for their community and they want to make it a better, safer, more attractive place to live. But when these same parents, citizens, volunteers, and donors get ready to make major purchases for their homes or families, they often decide to go out of town to do so.

You have to wonder why people would work so tirelessly to make improvements to their hometowns, and not support the merchants who are the backbone of the community. We know that for some in our American culture, shopping has become more of a hobby than a necessity of life. We love to see the beautifully displayed merchandise, hear the festive music, and smell the aroma offered in mega shopping centers.

The reality is that most of that same merchandise is available right here at home. Local restaurants and bakeries offer a wide variety of tastes and smells. And in addition to the music that can often be heard from inside our local stores, shoppers will also be greeted by familiar faces that have a sincere interest in their well-being. Some other good reasons for shopping at home:

No parking hassles or traffic congestion.

Save windshield time -- a roundtrip excursion from McCook to North Platte takes 2 hours 18 minutes; Kearney--3 hours 46 minutes; Grand Island--5 hours 6 minutes; Lincoln--7 hours 18 minutes; Omaha-8 hours 44 minutes, and Denver-8 hours 30 minutes. Couldn't that time be much better spent with family and friends?

Save money -- we estimate that it costs almost $59 in gas, maintenance and meals for two to go to North Platte; almost $75 to Kearney; more than $94 to Grand Island; more than $158 to Lincoln; $180 to Omaha; and almost $170 to Denver. What additional gifts could you put under the tree by forgoing the out of town shopping this year?

When you support local business, the community as a whole benefits. Local merchants support local causes -- athletic teams, United Way, Hospice, Community Foundation, churches, YMCA, Habitat for Humanity and Senior Citizens Center. They are the volunteer coaches for your children's teams, Sunday school teachers and youth leaders. They help to organize Heritage Days, 4th of July fireworks displays, and other community celebrations. They are responsible for a strong community theater and other entertaining performances provided throughout the year.

Sales tax dollars generated at home come back to the community in the form of property tax relief, economic development, and city improvements.

Local businesses have a wide variety of merchandise, and they know the merchandise they are selling. Because they are your friends and neighbors, they have a vested interest in selling you the right thing and standing behind their products. They will usually go the extra mile to ensure your needs are taken care of.

Before you head to the hustle and bustle of out-of-town mega malls this holiday season, we challenge you to spend some time in your local community with your local merchants. Look around the community you count on for everyday needs, whether that is Imperial, Benkelman, Oberlin, Cambridge, McCook or one of the other great communities that make up Southwest Nebraska and Northwest Kansas. We expect that you will be pleasantly surprised to find that you can fulfill many Christmas wishes locally. And the benefits of shopping at home will continue all throughout the year.

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  • Support our local businesses. If they don't have what you are looking for, ask them to order it in. These are the folks that support our local community. They provide jobs to our friends, neighbors and relation. If your house burns down or you have a family medical emergency those places on the internet or in North Platte, Kearney or Lincoln will not be sending help. If you need to have your product worked on or returned/replaced it is eaiser to do it here. Support those that support you.

    -- Posted by dennis on Tue, Nov 23, 2010, at 3:00 PM
  • Well ochosinco...... I would hardly think that the statement "Shop at Home" would be to say DON'T GO OUTSIDE ON MCCOOK! I think that shopping at Lord's of Indianola or perhaps some of the neat shops in Oberlin KS would not be considered taboo. I challenge you to give me the name of any Big Box retailer CEO that has shopped McCook or the surrounding area other than laying down a minuscule amount for advertising. I don't like being derogatory but your statement is stupid and furthermore I couldn't give a rats butt if you care about my opinion or not, it doesn't change the fact that you are a negative minded individual which searches for a head to knock off with a shovel and frankly.... as much as you don't care about anyone else's opinion as you have noted on several comments boards, I assure you that the feeling is equally as passive towards yours, the only difference is that more people DON'T care about your opinions than you don't care about theirs.

    I'd wish you a Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, of even a Happy New Year but I'm sure you would return with yet another derogatory comment about how Thanksgiving was a holiday gained by the slaughter of the Native Americans, Christmas is a Christian day shoved down the throats of everyone and New Years just means another year of misery, so instead I wish you none of the fore-mentioned.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Fri, Nov 26, 2010, at 5:42 PM
  • I don't entirely disagree with Nick on this however I'm not sure that this is the season for ill feelings.

    After a year of turmoil regarding the City, State and specifically Nation-wide, perhaps everyone should take the time to look at what they have to be thankful for. Sometimes it may require a bit of searching but during these hard times we should at least be thankful that we are becoming stronger individuals by means of discovering those lost resources that we forgot we had, to weather the rough seas that we have faced and may continue to face.

    Although a friendlier face on the comments boards may prove to be less interesting.... the lesser invasiveness may help everyone's mood in a time that is portrayed to be joyful yet is often times found to be quite stressful.

    Perhaps a decent New Year's Resolution might be "I'm going to make things better" and to follow through with it, put forth an effort to get out there and apply ourselves in a productive manner rather than knock the efforts of those which are walking the walk.

    To all, regardless of religious affiliation, Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy New Year. May the upcoming year be one of prosperity, whatever it is you wish to prosper in.

    Nick, by the way.... I know what it is that you are trying to say, but venting in anger or frustration is certainly not the most productive way to get things done, just a suggestion. I commend you for your passion to the local economy, keep up the passion, in the end it will result in a positive direction.

    Ochosinco, just an observation but Nick is not wrong.... you do seem a bit negative. I wish you perhaps a more peaceful New Year.

    -- Posted by PensiveObserver on Fri, Nov 26, 2010, at 9:03 PM
  • ochosinco,

    It is as PO stated.... I guess I was a bit stressed in this time. I apologize for the harsh posting and after reading it myself I almost had the web-master delete it.


    I agree, it's not the time of year to be negative. I'm in a better mood now.

    To all,

    I apologize for my emotional response to ochosinco's comment. I truly desire to see McCook and the surrounding area flourish and when someone seems to throw out a less than positive remark I feel the need to dispute.

    To Everyone.... have a wonderful Holiday Season.

    Nick Mercy

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Sat, Nov 27, 2010, at 12:41 PM
  • i had to buy 2 things this year that were not available locally - even by special order. for these 2 things i used ebay - which proved to be a good source.

    -- Posted by bob s on Sun, Nov 28, 2010, at 2:08 PM
  • *

    @ocho I suppose if you consider factual history bashing of Christmas, I'm guilty.

    -- Posted by Damu on Sun, Nov 28, 2010, at 9:50 PM
  • *

    @ocho Your silly! hehe

    -- Posted by Damu on Mon, Nov 29, 2010, at 11:10 AM
  • You are throwing the word pegan around like it is a bad or dirty word!!!!!Pegans dont worship money or consumerisim. I beleive they worship nature! Santa is pure capitalist consumerisim. You know...the money god in a red suit and white beard!

    The materialistic obcenity that christmas had become should be what is at issue here. I personally am boycoting christmas and refuse to do any shopping for any thing but the basic necessitys this time of year. Nobody tells me how, where or on what to spend my hard earned money.

    A simple meal taken from the bounty of my garden and a turkey provided by a hunter shared with family and close friends on the winter solstice will be my celebration.

    I wonder what this makes me?!?!:^)



    -- Posted by kaygee on Tue, Nov 30, 2010, at 9:07 AM
  • *

    @kaygee Technically you could feasibly construe, to Christians and religion that isn't christianity is pagan.

    You have the right idea though, and I salute you in your awesomeness!

    -- Posted by Damu on Tue, Nov 30, 2010, at 11:36 AM
  • As a Christian, I doubt, to the ninth degree, that you will find a single Christian that scorns ANYONE that wishes to adopt the idea that Christmas isn't about the gifts. The truth is, Christians, or at least Catholics are to set this time aside for celebrating Christ's birthday not shopping.... so eddy, I don't really know what you were saying there. Christmas, although a Christian's day of celebration, has been commercialized by everyone, Christian or NOT.

    Hate the player not the game.

    damu: I don't think Christians consider the Jewish religion "pagan", Jesus Christ himself was Jewish!

    ocho: As far as bashing you goes, I apologize.

    You have to admit though, your negativity rings loud in about 99% of tour posts. I can cut and paste too and I believe I can support my statement with a number of excerpts in a matter of only a few minutes. I wasn't saying that you WERE bashing Christmas, just that it certainly wouldn't be uncharacteristic of you to do so.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Tue, Nov 30, 2010, at 3:56 PM
  • *

    @Nick You are correct I should have said all non--Abrahamic religions. Fair enough amigo!

    -- Posted by Damu on Tue, Nov 30, 2010, at 4:11 PM
  • You're all nuts!!

    Enough said!!

    -- Posted by SunnyMomma on Tue, Nov 30, 2010, at 4:34 PM

    YES thats it..... I am nuts!!!!! You are right!! Thankyou:^)


    Lighten up kiddo you health depends on it!

    Peace and Love to all


    -- Posted by kaygee on Wed, Dec 1, 2010, at 5:38 PM
  • Geeze ocho, I didn't even have to pull up any of your past posts! You make it too easy on me. Hey, by the way, I stated that 99% of your posts were negative, not that you were 99% of all negative posts. If everyone was negative but 1 person it wouldn't change YOUR percentage. What I was getting at though, is that you rarely have a positive thing to say.... I should have put it that way to begin with but I suspect that your negativity would have rung through regardless. In any case I'm done attacking you about this, it's the way you are... it IS what it is.

    Try to have a nice holiday season.


    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Wed, Dec 1, 2010, at 6:00 PM
  • Just curious, are you all retired, post while at work, or what? Go volunteer or do something to make this a better place. I for the life of me cannot figure why so many feel the need to weigh in on the simplest of topics. (Nice article, etc. etc. as if we all are waiting for your approval).

    -- Posted by hulapopper on Wed, Dec 1, 2010, at 8:07 PM
  • hala,

    Retired, yes.... thank you for taking the time to read my opinion. It wasn't all for not. I do volunteer by the way, but this is the only hobby I have... (as boring and pathetic as it is) Really I just like to find a cause and fight for it, there really wasn't much of a cause here but what the heck huh?

    Again, thanks for taking time out of your day to read these useless opinions, it's people like you that notice, which keep us posters going.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Wed, Dec 1, 2010, at 9:40 PM
  • Does anyone remember what the article was about??

    -- Posted by Steph on Thu, Dec 2, 2010, at 12:11 PM
  • Na... we're off on a tangent now. Honestly, whithout looking I can't really remember the article at all.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Thu, Dec 2, 2010, at 6:38 PM
  • SWEET!

    -- Posted by kaygee on Mon, Dec 6, 2010, at 6:37 PM
  • Steph

    Yes, without looking I certainly remember the topic of this article.

    In fact, I was quite passionate about it at first... BUT, then I managed to get my head together about it and realize that ocho was simply stressing that he is all about himself and that "Hometown USA" doesn't really matter to him so long as he gets what he wants at a discount and his source of income keeps dishing out the dough. Whoops, I made it personal again. Sorry ocho.... But you have to admit.... just kidding.

    -- Posted by Nick Mercy on Mon, Dec 6, 2010, at 10:07 PM
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