Black Friday is here, and as shoppers begin checking items off their list for their loved ones, the Washington County Chamber of Commerce wants to remind them of the importance of shopping local.

While many shoppers have their eyes on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there is also Small Business Saturday, a national campaign started in 2010 that celebrates locally-owned shops and stores and promotes shopping at them during the holiday season.

Chamber President Wende Ragonis Anderson says the support that local businesses provide to the Washington County community is invaluable, so it is important to give back to them whenever possible.



To kick off the holiday shopping season, the Chamber is launching a campaign called “Give the Gift of Local”.  On the Chamber’s website,, a special page divides local businesses into three categories: Specialty Shopping, Dining & Entertainment, and Health & Beauty.

Ragonis Anderson says this tool can be used to gather ideas for a variety of gifts.



Ragonis Anderson reminds shoppers that any time they buy a taxable good or service in Washington County, a portion of the sales tax dollars from that purchase stay in the county to support local parks, economic development initiatives and first responders.

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  1. I understand the issue & would much rather & do try to avoid the big high traffic towns but ever pay attention to the to the vehicles that city, county officials, business owners who get out of & unlock their doors drive to work ? Their Houston, Bryan ,Caldwell or when having roofs interior work done & the stickers on the side of these work trucks are mostly from out of town.

  2. I work in a local nursing home where I earn $10 an hour after being there a number of years. I can’t afford to buy at the stores downtown. One blouse in a downtown boutique would cost me at least a day’s wages!! And where should I buy toys for my kids? I can’t afford the ‘locally owned’ toy stores so dollar stores here I come. Without better wages in Brenham you can’t expect the locals to shop your downtown stores designed for the tourists. And here’s another idea, instead of having a high priced celebrity at the historic Simon Theater on the weekend of the stroll, just think how much you could make by showing a traditional holiday movie at a reasonable price that all of us with memories of the Simon could take our kids and grandkids to see.

    1. If you are doing that hard work, (and I know of what I speak), and having been doing it for years; with all the jobs that are available in and near Washington County that pay much more, why on earth would you keep doing it for $10 an hour?? If there are companies in and near Brenham that are getting away with paying employees that low pay-if the employees don’t wake up and refuse to be underpaid, the employers will keep doing it. We live between TWO very well known travel stops that start the lowest man on the totem pole out at about 12.00 an hour AND benefits. The housing costs keep rising and we pay more for groceries in Washington County and have much less selection. Not to mention the costs of fuel. Stop working for sub standard wages. No one can take care of themselves on $10 an hour, much less a family.

      1. Well, first, thank you for your words of encouragement. I suppose everyone here where I work could just walk out the door but who would care for our residents then? Many of my coworkers are employed at more than one facility here and they all pay the same. Yes, I could earn more money at McDonalds or at Bucee’s but taking care of the elderly is what I choose to do. Merry Christmas.

        1. You should, let the “investors” in the nursing home take care of them. I know kids out of high school making more than $20+ an hour around the Houston area and they don’t live in Houston.
          Don’t forget, your number one priority is to your children. They are the future; the caretakers of the future.
          America used to have a wage ratio of 14:1 (highest to lowest wages in an organization) in 1965. Now we have a wage ratio of something like 300:1. While not socialism at all, wage ratio legislation has corrected the income disparity issue elsewhere and also gotten done with the minimum/living wage farce. We could have a wage ratio of 10:1, maybe less, and that would go a long way in helping solve all of our national and local issues.

  3. Amazon, E-Bay, Walmart Online and others DELIVER right to your doorstep! There are no men clothing stores in Brenham. Since Palais Royal and J. C. Penney closed you cannot buy a pair of men’s shoes in this town! And no I did not typically buy from Penney’s because their products are not fashionable and way too expensive! Thank God for Internet shopping! And Post Oak Mall, Willowbrook Mall, Memorial City, Katy Mills and others are just a short leisurely drive away. Here is the 411; either bring to our city up to date and modern places to shop or shoppers with funds to shop with will drive out of town to those places. It is not rocket science. So, the “old guardians that guard the old money” might want to learn new tricks! The inmates have formed alliances and rebelled.

      1. The ‘good ole boys’ you refer to that used to ‘rule’ Brenham have passed away and their children hightailed it out of here as soon as they graduated. We’ve got other people in charge that neither have any attachment to Brenham or future loyalty to Brenham. We can’t get good places to move to Brenham because too many people choose to go out of town to shop.

  4. It’s difficult to shop locally when the only clothing store is WalMart and the boutiques downtown are too expensive… I’d love to support local but I have to eat and pay bills… I’ll go out of town to shop…

  5. I understand the importance of shopping local, but the stores in Brenham are so sub standard compared to the same stores in other places. Walmart, Home Depot and Lowe’s are all a huge waist of real estate!!!
    I’m sure the new stores that are on the way will be no different.
    I just don’t understand why these big box stores feel the need to build here if they are not going to serve the needs of the community.
    Please boycott these stores and shop the local downtown shops.

    1. ?
      Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and Lowe’s are great for many things, not all. Just as Woodsons and Ace are good for things, but not all.
      Unfortunately a good amount of the downtown shops are boutiques with high priced ladies fashions and accessories.
      How much money do you think most people have to buy gifts for others, let alone items for themselves?
      I spend money locally when I can, but locally doesn’t always have what I need when I need it.
      The big box stores also employ many people who live in Brenham, that have families to provide for, so how is that a waste of real estate?
      You statement is a little confusing.

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