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Lorinscott 1
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Great article, Tim! Scott and I are so happy AltaEats is doing well, and extremely pleased that Chef Paul took the plunge and invested in Altadena, too!
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Thank you, Tim!
Toggle Commented Apr 18, 2013 on Now open: Shop Altadena on Facebook at altadenablog
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Woohoo is right - so happy Susann won! By the way....those fantastic elixirs her company makes? They're available at Webster's Fine Stationers, where you can find all manner of hyper-local artisan products!
Toggle Commented Apr 9, 2013 on Altadena all the Doo-Dah Day! at altadenablog
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Mr. Barden is a true gentleman, we're proud to call him a customer of ours.
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Happy birthday, Rosie!
Toggle Commented Mar 2, 2013 on Circle of life at altadenablog
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I truly hope they do, too, JHB. Yes, there was an implicit slur when I mentioned the generics from India, coming from an independent retailer who knows what it feels like when a multi-national corporation can muscle their suppliers into providing merchandise, including pharmaceuticals, at such a low cost that we'd never have any hope of getting. It's not fair and it sets an artificial standard that's not sustainable. If the generics you're buying are only $4.00, think what the people making them are being paid - probably pennies. That alone makes me not trust them...that, and the fact that India's a developing country. I understand from personal experience what it's like not being able to afford an rx.....but that doesn't mean I'd get mine at WM.
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JHB, of course Mat's doesn't import their generics from India like Walmart does. If I had a quarter for every time someone has mentioned how much they love Mat's, as well as our own Webster's Community Pharmacy, I'd have a LOT of money. I hear many people every day I'm here at the store - and that's every day for 5.5 years now, barring national holidays.
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Let's not forget Mat's Pharmacy, independently owned and loved in the community, that will also be threatened.
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Yes, indeed we have, sir. I'd like to thank you (and The Proprietor) again for letting me state our opinion.
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Thank you, Mr. Korn, both Scott and I appreciate your sentiment. Now I'm going to upset you again with taking issue with your statement of "Although I disagree with the "No Walmart in Altadena" movement (at least as it applies to the Lincoln Avenue site)..." by saying that we are all Altadena, whether east or west side - a Walmart there is just as disagreeable as one on Lake Avenue, when you take into account the local businesses that it threatens. We support business in Altadena, just not ones who make it a practice to put others out of business. I've heard it said that Walmart is specifically taking aim at Ralphs and Food For Less; let's not overlook the fact that SuperKing, Matt's Pharmacy, Pontlican Market, Baja Ranch, and others are under the gun as well. The point being, as the old song puts it, is, you don't know what you've got 'till it's gone. We would be remiss not to remind you of that.
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Mr. Korn, I'll attempt to answer your questions with as much clarity as I can. You're correct when you pointed out that Scott and I don't live in Altadena at the present time. However, we don't live in a different state, we do live in the same general region. But, Scott grew up here in Altadena, and has worked for his father's corporation his entire career. I moved to Altadena in 1986 and raised my daughter here - she went to Loma Alta elementary, Noyes Elementary, St. Elizabeth School, and Pasadena High School. We lived on Villa Grove Drive, which is up at the top of Lake Ave., and lived there for 11 years. We moved to the westside because my mom and dad passed away, leaving my childhood home on the bluff by Loyola Marymount University vacant. Since my sister already owned a home, we bought out her half of the house, moved, and have been renovating it ever since, and I'd like to be able to keep the home in our family. But we're in Altadena every single day save national holidays, and we do spend our profits, such as they are, in Altadena, which segues into your next question of how a local business "keeps" their profits in their community. An independently owned local business with a storefront typically employes at least one, usually local, person. They are helping the local economy by paying that person, who then also spends money in town. All of us use other businesses to help our own businesses - we use local accountants and bookkeepers; we buy our store maintenance supplies at local hardware stores (like you do, we patronize Altadena Hardware quite a bit); we use local printers when we have fliers to hand out and local graphic artists to design those fliers; we and our employees eat at local restaurants for lunch, and, in our case, we use local restaurants to cater our events. In fact, WFS has gone above and beyond the call to support our local businesses - we regularly highlight them on our Facebook page and blog, report any new developments with them; and have actually introduced new businesses to the area (Bonnie B's Smokin' Barbeque and Waste Less Living, both whom we shared our Grand Re-Opening with in 2008) DD's Chick & Cat Shack, etc.). Every local business that I know personally practices using local and/or regional businesses to operate - we support each other and our community by doing so. When they talk about the "multiplier effect", this is what they mean. Each one of these business that we use to conduct our business goes out in their community and does the same thing, and so on, and so on,to the benefit of that community. In contrast, large corporate stores don't do that - Walmart is certainly not using a local accountant; and although their employess might grab a bite to eat in the area where their store is at, chances are that they don't have a long enough shift to warrant a lunch break. Remember, in retail, the breaks are a standard 10 minutes, and shifts are normally four or five hours, which is not enough for a 30-min lunch. They're also not using a local hardware store for supplies - those are shipped from headquarters. So, if you look at it this way, our local businesses enrich our local economies much more than big-box stores do. Yes, they have made promises to "support" our community. It remains to be seen how much they actually do and whether it's sustainable or not. Typically, though, corporate owned businesses donate to national charities, which is all well and good, but who's making it possible for the local little league team to buy uniforms? Who's helping to fill that local food bank you speak of? At WFS, we accept donations year 'round for The Fork In The Road Gang, to benefit Union Station. We also collect sample sized toiletries for indigent women through All Saints Church throughout the year....in fact, our collection box is full, so we'll have to make a delivery soon. We have supported Five Acres in the past, and fully expect to continue in the future. We raise funds for the Bright Future Scholars, and for Trained Dogs For Adoption. We let other businesses advertise in our store, and we actually have merchandise from another local retail shop for sale in our store, and we give them 100% of the sales. Will Walmart do that? You can bet not. We also just emailed Christmas Tree Lane Association with the news that we raised over $500.00 for them this holiday season, by selling their merchandise at the store and giving them 75% of net proceeds. Now that's what I call supporting local, and I don't think that stores like Walmart are going to do that.
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Beautifully said, Zak.
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Mr. Korn, sorry about my late response to your post. I crafted a great reply but it got lost in cyber-space and I didn't have time to rewrite it. The best answer I can quickly give you to answer your questions is this new post on Independent We Stand's blog by 90.9 WBUR Boston’s NPR News Station, which you can read here: http://www.independentwestand.org/still-need-convincing-here-are-6-more-reasons-to-buy-local/. This post, in part, states: "Has the Washington fiscal chaos been driving you nuts? Anxious about our still sluggish economy? There’s a constructive step you can take right now. Think of something you need and go buy it at a local store. By “local,” I mean any business that you can easily get to by walking, driving or via public transportation; and is independently owned by people from the area. National firms, whether brick-and-mortar or online, don’t qualify. The point is to go in person to a locally owned store and spend money. It doesn’t have to be a lot. If your budget is tight, make it a basic item you would have bought anyway. In short, reallocate some of your usual spending to small indie businesses near you. Why is this a good idea right now? Because as we become global consumers, shopping at chain stores and online, it’s easy to forget how crucial small, independent businesses are to our collective well-being. In fact, small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy, accounting for about half of all private-sector jobs, and 65 percent of new jobs created in the past 17 years. These figures come from the Small Business Administration, based on its definition of a small business as one employing fewer than 500 people. Local economies often depend on businesses at the low end of that scale, many employing just a few people. Still need convincing? Addicted to the efficiency of buying online? Shopping at small, local stores is a lot smarter than you think: 1. It Gives You Control. The fiscal cliff drama is a reminder that many aspects of our economic lives are out of our hands, controlled by distant people pursuing agendas that aren’t necessarily in line with our own. The rise of big-box stores and giant retail websites is more of the same. Where did that meat come from? Why are ads for the shoes I was checking out yesterday following me everywhere I go online? Buying local is partly about taking back control. You’re dealing with real people who understand what they’re selling and, in most cases, will stand by it. 2. Local Spending Circles Back to You. The money you spend at national chains and big online stores enriches distant organizations and their stockholders. Local independents are more likely to keep their profits circulating in the local economy, a multiplier effect that directly benefits you and your neighbors. Small retailers and service providers support their communities in countless other ways, too, from sponsoring youth sports teams to supporting local charitable organizations." Please read this post in its entirety - in fact, investigate the articles on Independent We Stand, The American Independent Business Alliance, The Institute Of Local Self Reliance, and The 3/50 Project. We,as Americans, have become so inured to buying from huge corporate stores and the internet, that we have almost lost our communities. Developers and government planners want to make us all alike, so it won't matter if you're in Altadena or Altanta - we'll all look the same, with the same stores, the same cookie-cutter merchandise and the same low pay for their employees. You ask if pay rates are any better at independently owned businesses, and I say yes, they are. We like to pay my people what they're worth, not what is dictated by a corporate board and same-store scales. Of course, they deserve more, but I'm working on it.
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No, sir, didn't say that at all. I just pointed out that their profits won't remain in Altadena, working for Altadena, the same way ours, or any independently-owned business' would. Although, I do have issues with the largest retailer in the world taking advantage of not only their workers, but their manufacturers, suppliers, buyers, and the entire United States. There's one way to fix all that - buy local. We fix our economy not from the top down, but from the bottom up.
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Correction, the URL for the American Independent Business Alliance is www.amiba.net/, not .com. Pardon.
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Well said, Nicole. And Arturo, you're not keeping your tax dollars local. Sure, Altadena's new Walmart(s) will pay CA state sales taxes and send them to Sacramento, but as for investing their (large) profits on what they sell here in Altadena? Nope, those go to Betonville, Arkansas. Better we keep our local, independent businesses alive and thriving so we can serve our community - study after study has shown that money spent at independently owned local businesses stays in your community to work at a much higher rate than money spent at corporate big box retailers. Don't believe? See articles available at http://www.amiba.com http://www.the350project.net or http://www.ilsr.org/
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Kristen, thank you! Love your post, in particular your last paragraph and your suggestion "But I think that as we examine the needs that each of these retail outlets fullfill-whether it be prices or product-we should not expect each retailer to meet every need of every segment of Altadena's wonderful, diverse population. We should instead look at the retail sector as a whole and try to ensure that every segment within our community(in this case, low income to high income) is having at least some of their retail and grocery needs met locally." Exactly! To Joseph and everyone at the Altadena Farmers Market I say bravo - well done!
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Aug 2, 2010