Supporting locally on Small Business Saturday

Robin Bradshaw
Alice Echo News Journal
Imelda Ramirez, owner of Action Sports and Awards, prepares for Small Business Saturday.

This weekend is Small Business Saturday and shopping locally helps support the communities we share together in the areas we call home. Downtown Alice is a hub of small family-owned businesses some of which have been in business for over 30 years. 

Action Sports and Awards, and the Wedding Lace Bridal Shop are two small businesses that reside downtown and have survived the test of time. 

Action Sports and Awards opened its doors in 1987 and specializes in engraved trophies, embroidery and screen printing all in-house and on-site.

"The businesses downtown are a special customized service. You do not get that from big corporations," said Imelda Ramirez Owner of Action Sports and Awards. "We do everything here at the store. When a customer calls for specialized sport league shirts, they're talking to the people creating the shirts. Similar to the Wedding Lace Bridal Shop when you buy a dress you're having it altered and customized, just for you," Ramirez explains. 

Wedding Lace Bridal Shop

The Wedding Lace Bridal Shop opened its doors in 1979 and is ingrained in the fabric and history of the downtown Alice area. Owner Renee Pedraza specializes in special occasion formal dresses and men's formal wear and collaborates with local artists in visual art photography.

"I come from a family of creative artists and entrepreneurs," said Owner Renee Pedraza. 

Pedraza grew up at the family business and is now putting her personal touch to move the business forward to the next era. The vision is to revitalize downtown Alice and help support local artists and create a lively inviting environment with the small family-owned businesses, she shares space with on Main Street.

"Downtown Alice is so important, it's the oldest area in the city and it has so much history and culture. We need to preserve that," Pedraza said. "Downtowns are the heart of a city and without a healthy heart, we can not have a healthy city." 

Small Business Saturday supports the businesses that make up our neighbors, supports our little leagues and contributes to the sales tax revenue that supports the economy locally. Most businesses will host discount sales and specials in-store and online during the pandemic for Saturday's event. Christmas is almost here, if your plans include shopping this weekend you might want to think about the stores that occupy the community you call home.