A Must Read!!
December 19th 2014
JOY TO THE WORLD…
Or at least to 25 first graders
Santa, his trusty Elf, Ms. Magic(my wife Debbie),
and my daughter Arleigh’s 1st grade class.
Things happen for a reason. I believe that. What that reason is… is the tough part figuring out. Two years ago, I was on Marketplace with
Kai Ryssdal. As a big fan of the show, I was honored to be asked to talk about small business. I got calls from long lost friends, college buddies, and one from a gentleman named Frank, who happened to hear the show from his hometown of Toledo. Frank must have like what he heard on the radio show because he contacted me and wanted to buy $100.00 worth of merchandise to help my small business. Whatta guy!
I told Frank, I had a better idea. Let’s leverage his $100.00 and I will make it worth at least 3 times that amount, so that we can buy gifts for my daughter Arleigh’s kindergarten class. I let Frank know that these kids came from one of the poorest districts in the state. I also let him know that I would dress up as Santa to hand out our goodies. That first Christmas giveaway-2012 was an incredible success. I don’t know who enjoyed it more- The kids or your humble narrator. Last year, our angel Frank, upped his ante. We at The North Pole raised the bar too, adding my wife Debbie, exuberant elf, Ms. Magic to the event. True to form, our friend Frank came through again for the 3rd year in a row. As you can see, the kids had a great time and loved their gifts.
I have to tell you something…There is nothing like being Santa. You are an almighty force to these kids. I felt like I could walk on water and my feet didn’t touch the ground either. Bucket lists are popular now. Dressing up as Santa should be on everyone’s bucket list. I will put this out there too. If anyone wants to borrow my Santa outfit to brighten the lives of others, as long as it is available, you can borrow it for no charge.
One recommendation: Try and and adjust the beard/mustache a little better than me so that you don’t look like The Werewolf meets Santa.
Thanks to Kai Ryssdal, the gang at Marketplace, Debbie, Arleigh, and Frank for putting smiles on a lot of faces.
Support Brick and Mortar
For the past few years I have written about the demise of independent businesses. Each year, more and more Mom and Pops are forced to close. It used to be that Big Box was 75%
of the competitive problem and online sales was 25%. The tide has shifted and now it is probably 75% online and 25% Big Box. This rapid increase of E-commerce in market position has become the indie stores’ Kryptonite. The buying public has become very complacent and if I may say- lazy.
Can you blame them? My big concern is that the deleterious effect on brick and mortar needs to be addressed before it is too late. I’m not just talking about retail stores closing. I’m talking about commercial districts and neighborhoods fighting against rampant vacancies. In many cases, gentrification has made rent unaffordable to artists, entrepreneurs, and indie businesses. So what can we all do? How about doing your last minute shopping in a local brick and mortar. Support those who support you. I say that because, we independent store owners are the first to give gift certificates, donations, and support to local charities and neighborhood groups. We hire and pay taxes locally. We spend and invest our personal and business dollars in our community and surrounding areas. When an independent store closes, an accountant, a lawyer, an insurance broker, a printer, etc… loses a valued customer. I ask that you think twice before you pick up your smartphone or computer and place an order online. Send some of that business that leaves our community and shop locally. Talk to a human, get expert advice, and we all win.
SUPPORT THE ARTS AND FILL YOUR STOMACH WITH GOOD FOOD…
15 YEARS OF TOMMY AND THE COMMUNITY HELPING HEIGHTS ARTS.
WHAT A GREAT WAY TO START THE NEW YEAR.
HAPPY HEALTHY NEW YEAR!!!
Big Fun – 1814 Coventry Road, Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118 216-371-4386
Big Fun Cleveland – 11512 Clifton Blvd, Cleveland, Ohio 44102 216-631-4386
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