Representative Suzanne Bonamici paid a visit to shops in Northwest Portland, to highlight Small Business Saturday. 

The pandemic caused many people to turn to online shopping, putting strain on local small businesses.

During the shopping holiday, a KOIN 6 News report dove into the unique challenges facing small shops this year, and what residents can do to help. 

Local shops told KOIN 6 News the best way to contribute to their success is to do a portion of your holiday shopping at local small businesses. 

With many shops now reopened, Small Business Saturday offers a timely reminder that shopping locally can help keep dollars within the local community. 

Saturday, Congresswoman Bonamici visited several stores in Northwest Portland, including Garnish Apparel, Oblation Papers Press, and the US Outdoor Store

Bonamici told KOIN 6 News she once worked at her mom’s small business, so she understands the challenges in keeping a business going.

“I know how hard small business owners and their employees work,” Bonamici said. “Today is a day to celebrate that and give them support, because this has been a really tough couple of years for them.”

KOIN 6 News spoke to employees at oblation papers and press, a company which still produces custom greeting cards, after more than 20 years in the business. 

Employees said despite the increased challenges in recent years, due to the pandemic and increased protests downtown, things are looking up this holiday season.

Workers told KOIN 6 News they saw an increase in foot-traffic during the Saturday shopping holiday.