This Holiday Season, Shop Local



December 13, 2019


Professional PhotographyA recent Red Rock News online poll asked residents when they do their holiday shopping. I took the survey and was in the 45 percent group that said, ‘early December’. The results show 40 percent say they look for holiday deals year-round.

I am also interested in where people do their shopping as well as when. This time of year is critical for the 850+ Chamber partners in and around Sedona. While you search for a Sedona-centric gift for a relative, a thoughtful gift for a loved one, or stocking stuffers for everyone at work and home, I hope you keep it local!

Our local merchants earn your support with world-class products and services, and the holidays are a good time to also reflect on their hometown roots and contributions to our small-town quality of life.
• 325 of our partners have been with the Chamber for more than ten years
• 116 have been partners for more than 25 years
• 65 percent are located within Sedona’s city limits with 15 percent more in the Village of Oak Creek or Oak Creek Canyon

These deep connections inspire truly meaningful moments, such as Coffee Pot restaurant’s annual free Thanksgiving Dinner, which fed more than 600 people and raised more than $5,000 for the Sedona Community Food Bank this year. More than a dozen other Chamber partners provide the Food Bank with in-kind donations, money, promotions and fundraisers.

Forty local businesses donate $1,000 per year to the Sedona Red Rock Trail Fund through the Sedona Trail Keepers program, a total of $35,000, which the Chamber matches. The Enchantment Resort, a Sedona Trail Keeper contributor, is also helping fund the new 25-mile Western Gateway Trail system.

The Humane Society of Sedona saves animals, reunites strays with owners and provides pet adoptions. More than 30 businesses support this beautiful service.

Keep Sedona Beautiful, one of Sedona’s most respected environmental groups, depends on partner business contributions for workshops and the KSB Speaker Series. Businesses strongly support KSB on issues such as dark skies and noise reduction.

The Chamber sponsors more than a dozen annual much-loved events such as the International Film Festival, the Veg Fest and Yoga Fest.

By shopping locally, you help our partners continue this high level of support while directly boosting our economy.

Partner businesses and other merchant revenues generate 100 percent of the city sales taxes that pay for our public services, an estimated $21 million this year (shopping elsewhere means the sales tax you pay at the register supports services elsewhere, not in Sedona).

The dollars you spend in Sedona continue to circulate around town. Local employees spend their earnings in the area, creating more transactions and more jobs. According to Yavapai College Regional Economic Development Center, spending from employees of the tourism industry alone accounted for $107.3 million in local sales in 2018 that required 962 workers, creating another $30.6 million in labor income.

So, this holiday season and year-round, shop local! It’s an easy and fun way to enjoy our beautiful town and select awesome gifts while supporting local businesses, incredible community events, fantastic local nonprofits and critical public services.

Happy Holidays from all of us at the Sedona Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau!

–Jennifer Wesselhoff, President/CEO