Monthly Features
Mount Eliza businesses feel the love
by ALISON DOHERTY – Mount Eliza Chamber of Commerce

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If anyone doubted the sheer resilience of our Mount Eliza traders and the dedicated support of our community, you only need to see the success of our Shop Local campaign.

Butcher’s shops, fish shops, bakeries, and fruit and vegie suppliers have been pumping as people found their kitchens again and explored the joy of cooking. Fashion and gift shops have enjoyed the broad spectrum of customers discovering how click and collect works.  Restaurants, cafes and the pub have limited their takeaway menus to their best-sellers rather than struggling to provide a huge list of options. In short, businesses are working to their strengths and not making the task too complicated.

Then we hear the heart-warming stories of staff at CB’s who – desperate for the camaraderie of the workplace and wanting to support the pub’s owners – volunteered their time through the week to run the takeaway service each evening.  These are the stories that make you realise how special this business community really is.

You have to also feel the strength of the owners of new businesses that have opened at some point in the past 18 months before lockdowns began or in between lockdowns – businesses such as Sandbar Café, Soul Press and Paletto Pops, none of which yet know what ‘normal’ trading is and which have certainly had to struggle through the learning curve in their own creative styles. The business owners have stayed strong, worked on their social media, and changed their product lists slightly, all to adjust and survive. And aren’t our local customers lucky to know that our amazing little businesses have all survived, with some even having grown stronger in the process.

It’s well worth a shopping trip to boutique-style Mount Eliza to find fashion for all ages, amazing gifts and unique homewares – and then there is the wealth of excellent beauty and personal services. Mount Eliza boasts quality fresh produce that’s second to none, and when we’re fully open again you’ll find a broad range of dining experiences, many with extended outdoor dining spaces.

October is going to be a critical month for the long-term survival of many small businesses. They need to see your faces back in their premises, both to encourage them and also to help with their turnover of stock. You are encouraged to shop and eat local to help our businesses recover their losses over the recent months. More than that, however, the shop owners really have missed seeing you.

So let’s do it. Let’s continue to shop local. Buy an extra pair of shoes, have a second meal out during the week, pick up a bottle of wine, or book a holiday with our travel agents for next year when we expect all borders will be open again. Mount Eliza will thank you.

ALISON DOHERTY – Mount Eliza Chamber of Commerce

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