Gift of Pickens program returns for second year

PICKENS — With November comes Small Business Month, and the Pickens Revitalization Association (PRA) is committed to continuing and expanding its Shop Local initiative, Gift of Pickens.

In its first year, the Gift of Pickens program provided more than $7,000 to be spent at local businesses in Pickens. And it is due to that success that organizers will continue with the program this year.

The Gift of Pickens program is an economic development tool designed to stimulate local shopping. A few of the reasons Pickens would like to continue a shop local initiative include:

• to support the community by keeping local dollars in the area

• to support locally-owned businesses

• to increase investments in the community by locally-owned businesses

• to encourage local prosperity by improving the local economy

“One of the PRA’s goals is to help local businesses here in Pickens thrive. By choosing to support locally owned businesses, we can help maintain Pickens’ distinct culture,” said PRA director Allison Fowler. “The money spent in locally-owned businesses has three times the impact on our community as money spent at national chains. When people shop local, it simultaneously creates jobs, invests in neighborhood improvement and promotes community development.”

Participating businesses will be identified as supporters of the program, and a window decal outlining that the business accepts Gift of Pickens will be provided as an additional marketing tool. There is no cost to the business to participate in the program.

The City of Pickens and Cannon Memorial Hospital participated as sponsors in the program’s first year, and gave the certificates to their employees as part of a holiday gift. These certificates are ideal for businesses of all sizes to give to their employees for the holidays, and also as gifts for family and friends.

Gift of Pickens certificates will be available for sale at Pickens City Hall, Pickens Revitalization Association, and Greater Pickens Chamber of Commerce. Each Gift of Pickens certificate is valued at $20.

If you would like more information about the Gift of Pickens program, please contact PRA at (864) 878-0105 or