Meridian Industrial


2020-12-21 | G. Michael Dobbs


This is the first edition of Go Local for the new year 2021. While 2020 certainly battered us all, I have hope that 2021 will be a recovery year for all of us.

Part of the that recovery involves strengthening the damaged economy. We have all seen it and most of us have felt it. Job losses, inventory issues, unemployment compensation, and evictions have made the news all year-long and it will continue.

The vaccines give us hope for reaching a point at which we could define as “normal.”

While Reminder Publishing actually bucked the industry trend by not having any layoffs – all of us did take unpaid furloughs– and expanding with the addition of two more weekly newspapers, we understand the pain our colleagues felt at many other news outlets across the country.

Part of our situation was helped by having a local advertising base with many essential businesses that remained opened. We deeply appreciate all of those businesses that supported us while we were supporting them.

So, what does all of this have to do with the magazine you’re holding in your hands?

Go Local was conceived as a lifestyle publication that would exclusively feature interesting stories of residents in Western Massachusetts and northern Connecticut, as well as businesses and attractions that are worthy of a road trip – whether to another town or perhaps just down your street.

The emphasis has always been, and will always be, on our neighbors and their successes. Go Local reflects the community at large and its entire staff hopes it is embraced by that community.

Supporting local businesses is fun and builds a large “neighborhood,” but it has other advantages. According to the official blog of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts here are some of the positive effects:
• Local businesses are more likely to utilize other local businesses such as banks,
service providers, and farms.
• For every $100 you spend at local businesses, $68 will stay in the community.
• Independent retailers return more than three times as much money per dollar of sales to the community in which they operate than chain competitors. Independent restaurants return more than two times as much money per dollar of sales than national restaurant chains.
• Small businesses employ 77 million Americans and accounted for 65% of all new jobs over the past 17 years.

The blog also noted several simple habits people can develop:
• Try the menu at a local restaurant for lunch or dinner
• Purchase a birthday present at a local gift shop
• Join a local gym
• Visit a local nursery or hardware store for your lawn and garden needs
• Get your car serviced at a local mechanic
• Visit a Massachusetts farmer’s market to purchase the ingredients for your family dinner. There are Buy Local groups throughout the state advocating locally
grown food products.

Let me add another habit you could acquire, visit the businesses featured in our stories and consider supporting the folks who advertise here.

With the end of the pandemic is still months away, it is more important than ever to keep our consumer dollars as close to home as possible in order to keep the recovery in our cities and towns moving forward.

If you’re inclined to make New Year resolutions, consider making this one: spend as much as you can locally. If you need some suggestions for local businesses, you know where to find them each and every month.

Thank you for reading Go Local.

- G. Michael Dobbs, Managing Editor

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Posted on 2020-12-21


Posted on 2020-12-21

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