Delivering items to neighbors

Jenni Nieft brings a bag of necessities to a home Tuesday. Nieft is one of many Douglas residents who are offering to grocery shop for citizens like the elderly or medically compromised who should stay home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an unprecedented move, The Douglas Budget and Glenrock Independent newspapers are working side-by-side with KKTY Radio and numerous other business and civic leaders in a media blitz to remind Converse County residents that it’s up to them to help their communities’ small businesses survive the failing economy.

“There’s a massive reduction of income taking place. Revenue streams are drying up quickly. Now is the time to support each other. We need our neighbors, sports teams, non-profits, our community – to support the businesses who have supported them for so long,” Douglas Budget Publisher Matt Adelman said.

Businesses are working to roll out the “Shop Local” campaign across all media in the upcoming 30 days, including messages in print and websites/online, through social media and across all of KKTY owner Dennis Switzer’s radio stations and signals.

“Without the support of citizens in our communities, there will be no revenue, no money available to help as we have done in the past. If you know someone who owns a business or works for a small business, you really should consider buying locally and supporting the businesses here or six month to a year from now, they won’t be here. Help them. Help the community. Help your fellow citizens,” Adelman implored.

Switzer, who owns several radio stations in Douglas, including KKTS and KKTY, said radio stations and newspapers are generally competitors for local ad dollars, but at this point in time it is necessary to work together to try to help the town’s small businesses survive.

“The economy is in crisis. Our health is in crisis. This is a time where we hang together, we build our community together. Local media does a wonderful job of serving their communities. We live here, we eat here, we go to church here, we do business here.

“In normal times, we are a vital business community. In crisis, we have to work together to keep what’s important to us,” he stated.

Switzer and Adelman want people to consider shopping locally whenever possible.

“That’s almost a worthless phrase these days. Everyone says it. I’ve sold advertising in Douglas for 25 years, mostly to locally owned ‘Mom and Pop’ businesses. If you’ve lived here long, you most likely know mom and pop. As our economy struggles, in part from the coronavirus, those businesses will struggle. They’ve been struggling already because of Amazon and online shopping. A lot of those ‘Mom and Pop’ businesses are up against the wall. We need to remember – it is vital to support them,” Switzer stressed.

“These are the businesses who have supported sports boosters, nonprofits like the animal shelter and Boys & Girls Club, and been there when others in our communities have been in need or want, often without a second thought and without any reason but it was the right thing to do,” Adelman noted. “Now, they need everyone to return that kindness by shopping in their businesses, even as they struggle to get supplies in or run out of key items quickly. Because if we don’t support them now, in their time of extreme need, they most certainly will not be here in the future to continue to support others in our communities.”

Both businessmen expressed high levels of gratitude to the large number of business, civic and community leaders who have stepped up this week to support the Shop Local-Shop Life message. A full list of those can be found on the ad in this issue, as well as on websites for douglas-budget.com, glenrockind.com and kktyonline.com and during the radio ads which will begin airing this week.

Any business wishing to participate in the “Shop Local” campaign can pick up posters and flyers to display in their location’s windows or hand out to customers. All are free of charge.

For more information, to add your name to the list of supporters or to pick up a poster, contact the Budget at (307)358-2965.

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