Why and where you should shop local for the holidays

The Christmas season is upon us, and if you haven’t started your shopping yet, you’re probably starting to panic a little! With about four weeks to go until the big day, the malls are getting busier and stores are preparing for the mad December rush. But why brave the busy, crowded shopping mall when there are plenty of small, local shops right here in Calgary? Here are four reasons why you should shop local this Christmas season:


  1. Show your neighbours some support! Local Calgarians have poured their hearts and souls into running their own small businesses, risking everything so that their dream could become a reality. Let’s support our entrepreneurs to help boost their business and our local economy at the same time.
  2. Find unique gifts. How many times have you heard someone say: “Oh I have that too” or “Yes, my friend bought that last week?” Shopping local should lower the chances of you buying something that your recipient has already heard of, or actually has!
  3. Minimize stress! Shopping at the mall in December is stressful enough, but also waiting for online packages to arrive just days before Christmas can be downright unbearable. Check out the local shops to find your perfect gift and bring it home the same day.
  4. Get to know your community at the same time! Many small businesses are run by the owners (most of the time). Getting to know a business this closely allows you to appreciate it, receiving good advice from someone who cares and often receives a deal since the owners are able to decide then and there what the price is.


Now Calgary is sprinkled with cute local shops and amazing designer boutiques, so it is often hard to find them if you don’t know where to look. There are countless holiday markets coming up in the next few weeks that would allow you to shop local and meet many of Calgary’s finest makers in one location. Here are a few to check out:


Spruce Meadows Christmas Market


Don’t miss the last weekend of this market to see over 300 vendors in one place!!

When: November 30
Time: 9:30am-8pm
Where: 18011 Spruce Meadows Way SW


Make It Market


Join 130 makers from across Canada under one roof for all your Christmas shopping needs!

When: December 6-9
Time: 11am-6pm
Where: Deerfoot City, 901 64th Avenue NE


Calgary Christmas Market


Bring the kids to meet Santa while you sip on mulled wine!

When: December 9
Time: 9am-5pm
Where: Calgary Farmer’s Market, 510 77th Avenue SE
Tickets: Free


Christmas in Kensington


Christmas movies and sleigh rides in Kensington!

When: December 1, 8, 15, 22
Time: 12-4pm
Where: Kensington Rd and 10th Street NW
Tickets: By donation


Next time you have a free weekend, add one (or all!) of these markets to your busy schedule – you’re guaranteed to find unique gifts and perhaps something for your own wish list too!