Here’s Where to Shop Local This Small Business Saturday

Several DC-area groups are hosting virtual and in-person events supporting locally owned spots.

Photo courtesy of iStock

November 28 is Small Business Saturday, and while Covid-19 means shopping for the holiday season will likely look a lot different this year, you can still support DC-area spots (and score a few deals). Here are some local groups hosting events to support small businesses, both in-store and online. 

DC Shop Small

The group DC Shop Small is organizing another city-wide virtual event for Washingtonians to shop online and locally this holiday season. The event is co-hosted by District Bridges, a nonprofit that focuses on economic development in DC neighborhoods. More than 300 local brands such as Lettie Gooch and Steadfast Supply will participate and offer promotions. The virtual event runs all day on November 28.

When the effects of Covid-19 first hit retailers, small business owner Mallory Shelter of the store Shelter and Mallory Shelter Jewelry teamed up with other local vendors to create DC Shop Small. “Back in April, when things were starting to close and physical shops were transitioning to online, we had our first event to see if we could [execute] a city-wide movement to show shoppers that, one, [small businesses] are still there, and two, that you can now find us online,” says Shelter. The original April 25 event generated nearly $200,000 in one day across 100 local businesses.

For the follow-up, DC Shop Small will also host a giveaway: Customers who upload their receipt to the group’s site on November 28 will have a shot at winning a gift basket with products from local brands such as Salt & Sundry and Underbares.

If you’d like your DC-area business to be included in the event, fill out the form here.

Victura Park at the Kennedy Center

Victura Park, which is the outdoor beer and wine garden at the Kennedy Center’s new Reach expansion, will transform into a weekend holiday market starting on Black Friday. From November 27 to December 20, folks can stop by to stock up on presents from local makers such as Gray Wolf Spirits and Potomac Candle. You can also hang out and grab some food, as well as beer and wine, hot chocolate, and spiked cider.

Downtown Holiday Market

The 16th annual event is back, and will run daily through December 23. This year, the Downtown DC BID and Diverse Markets have enacted new Covid-19 safety protocols: The event will be spread out along F Street NW between 7th and 9th Streets NW, and there will be one-way traffic and a single entrance in front of the Portrait Gallery. There will be over 70 local vendors selling goods, as well as food and drink for sale.

Alexandria Shop Small Week

The inaugural Alexandria Shop Small Week kicks off November 27 with Plaid Friday—the local version of Black Friday—and consists of 10 days and two weekends of deals, promotions, and Instagram giveaways. Almost 50 independently owned boutiques in Old Town and Del Ray will participate, and there will be free parking at meters. Meanwhile, a masked elf patrol will hand out gift cards to Alexandria shoppers every Saturday between November 28 and December 19 from 11 AM to 2 PM. 

If you don’t feel comfortable shopping in person, check out this digital Alexandria shopping guide for more information on shipping or curbside pick-up options. And keep an eye out for the ALX Promise shield on store windows as you shop: It means the spot has committed to enacting Covid-19 precautions.

Georgetown Small Business Saturday

To celebrate Small Business Saturday, a bevy of neighborhood shops and restaurants will partake in a two-week-long event hosted by the Georgetown BID. From November 28 to December 12, folks can swing by Georgetown and take advantage of giveaways and deals at participating spots. (Think a free candle with each $100 purchase at Pillar & Post, or ten-percent off cases of wine at Officina.)

And while the annual holiday light festival Georgetown Glow has been postponed, local spots will go all-out with the decor for the Georgetown Holiday Window & Streatery Competition. This year’s theme is “Silver Linings,” and the competition will run from December 1 to 31. Check it out and vote for your favorite holiday display or window via QR code.

Mimi Montgomery Washingtonian
Home & Features Editor

Mimi Montgomery joined Washingtonian in 2018. She’s written for The Washington Post, Garden & Gun, Outside Magazine, Washington City Paper, DCist, and PoPVille. Originally from North Carolina, she now lives in Del Ray.

Assistant Editor, Washingtonian Weddings

Jacqueline comes to Washingtonian with close to five years of digital content experience and SEO best practices. She previously was a senior editorial associate at WeddingWire, specializing in wedding fashion, and before that, an assistant at Vow Bride. Originally from Norfolk, Virginia, she now lives in Columbia Heights.