How Local Businesses Create Vibrant Communities

Cassie Bate Hurley Tweet us @crystalcityva @crystalcityva November 6, 2018 0 Comments

Cassie Bate Hurley is a born-and-raised Arlingtonian who’s spent the majority of her career organizing and managing events in the Arlington community. She is currently the Events Manager at the Crystal City Business Improvement District and in her “spare time,” serves on the Development Committee for Phoenix Bikes, volunteers for Homeward Trails Animal Rescue, and the Chamber’s Young Entrepreneurs Academy.

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Arlington is full of lively and walkable neighborhoods along with small businesses that provide our community with places for people to gather, better shopping experiences, and creation of jobs.

Small local businesses are the lifeblood of Arlington County and provide so many benefits: a sense of community identity, job creation, a better shopping experience, and places for people to gather, just to name a few. Shopping local keeps your money here in Arlington and is a direct investment in our community. When you shop local, a significantly higher percentage of your dollars spent stays here versus when you shop at a non-local business.

people eating at local restaurant, The Stand, Crystal City

They Invest in Your Neighborhoods

Local businesses have a personal investment in keeping the neighborhoods where they’re located vibrant and strong. These business owners tend to be very engaged in the community, through involvement in their local business improvement districts (BID) or Main Street association (e.g., Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, Clarendon Alliance) as well as philanthropically. The Crystal City Sports Pub, for example, sponsors all Arlington Public School sports teams and hosts a variety of fundraisers for a number of local causes.

Unique local offerings also showcase Arlington by drawing patrons from across the region. As the only gay bar in Northern Virginia, Freddie’s Beach Bar & Restaurant welcomes members of the LGBTQ community and their allies to Arlington from all over Virginia, which in turn benefits the surrounding businesses. Owner Freddie Lutz has also recently opened another restaurant, Federico Ristorante Italiano, several doors down, further demonstrating the commitment local owners have in their communities.

Walk Local, Shop Local

Small Business Saturday is the Saturday after Thanksgiving every year. In 2018, WalkArlington teamed up with the Crystal City Business Improvement District, Arlington Economic Development, and Netwalking to guide participants on a walking tour of small businesses through Pentagon City and Crystal City. The walk began with a tasty treat from our friends at Kind Bar followed by stops at several small businesses, including Freddie’s Beach Bar & Restaurant, Commonwealth Joe Coffee Roasters, Daniel’s Boutique, Jaleo, and more, while enjoying the area’s walkability. Tour participants walked away with some discounts to use when they shopped on Small Business Saturday.


Explore Locally

Explore your own neighborhood this Small Business Saturday with our Walkabouts (there are 25 Arlington neighborhoods featured!).


Photo Credit: Crystal City Business Improvement District

Post updated on June 26, 2019 to reflect current information. 

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