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The 'Shop Local' movement heads west | Business

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The 'Shop Local' movement heads west
The 'Shop Local' movement heads west

Coming off the heels of a successful event called WinterWest, the grassroots movement WelcomeWest is now encouraging residents to buy local, Westside style. A group of residents has committed to make all purchases in the month of May from Westside establishments, will share their experiences on their website (www.WelcomeWest.org), and is encouraging others to share about Westside purchases via Twitter (#livewest) and Facebook (@WelcomeWest).

"The intent of this is to experience as many uniquely Westside things as possible, to discover the hidden gems in our neighborhoods, and to share them with others," said Kyle Van Strien, Westside resident and WelcomeWest co-founder. While looking for these gems, the group is also seeking to discover what the Westside is missing, and hopefully provide ideas and encouragement for people looking to start businesses here.

"When the group [WelcomeWest organizers] told the West Leonard Business Association about their plans for LiveWest, we were thrilled. We have most everything you need on the Westside, but sometimes our strong local businesses can be overlooked," said Sue McKey, owner of The Shade Shop on Leonard Street.

Both West Fulton and West Leonard are exploring corridor improvements, and they want people to know that the Westside is open for business and looking to grow.

Businesses have already come on board to support the LiveWest effort and are offering specials for the month of May. These specials as well as additional items will be listed on www.WelcomeWest.org. In addition to local purchasing, LiveWest will include some special events such as a Vintage Rock?n?Bowl, the LiveWest Home Makeover in cooperation with West Grand Neighborhood Organization?s Adeline?s Promise program, and supporting the Friends of GR Parks in their I Love GR Parks clean-up day. Visit WelcomeWest.org or join the WelcomeWest Facebook fan page to stay up to date with the most current information on how you can participate.