It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays, with the smell of pumpkin spice in the air. Days are a bit cooler, and festivities with family and friends are on the calendar. Give the gift that keeps on giving this holiday season by shopping locally. You have probably heard it a thousand times, but it can’t be overstated – shopping small has a big impact. Here’s why shopping and supporting businesses in our hometown is one of the best things you can do this season.

Your purchases at local establishments support local families running the businesses and the employees working there. Those families and workers will use that money to frequent other Atascadero shops and restaurants that, in turn, support their own families. It creates a beautiful cycle of giving during the holiday season.

Now, more than ever, businesses in our community need our support. In late September, our Chamber and volunteers visited nearly 500 businesses during a Business Walk. Many retail establishments stated that this past summer was an especially slow season for them. This is likely due to residents and tourists feeling the effects of inflation, gas prices, and economic uncertainty. The holiday season is the last chance this year for our hometown businesses to catch up on missed sales that they need to stay open and thriving.

Shopping local is an intentional choice, especially in the age of two-day shipping from national, online retailers. Supporting the community where we all live, work, and play is one of the best you can give. If you’re looking for amazing shops near you to find one-of-a-kind gifts, I encourage you to visit our online Business Directory at

-Josh Cross, Atascadero Chamber CEO

Josh Cross

President & CEO of the Atascadero Chamber | Josh Cross

Josh Cross is a longtime Central Coast local, having grown up right here in Atascadero. He has a strong knowledge of governmental and community issues, in addition to economic development. Previously he worked as the Director of Economic Development for the Paso Robles Chamber of Commerce, and has always been passionate about the incredible work Chambers can do for their community.