Oamaru shoppers are promised "an immense shopping experience"
on Saturday, December 15, when a Shop Local Market Day is
held to draw Christmas trade into the town.
Retailers will have stalls on the footpath and there will be
live music to entertain shoppers.
Tourism Waitaki events development officer Jan Kennedy said
the event was organised to support retailers. She urged
shoppers to help the town's economy by buying local for
Otago Chamber of Commerce chief executive John Christie said
shops in North Otago and the rest of the region would be
relying on a good Christmas trading period. Many retailers
had struggled to compete with the growing popularity of
online shopping, he said "The retail market has been tough
all over the country.
"Certainly anecdotally we know that is also a very tough
environment for retailers across the region, including North
Otago, and they are coming under increasing pressure all the
time with changes in the retail environment.
"In the lead-up to Christmas, many of them will be
anticipating seeing some good trade through their stores.
Without that, some will find it pretty difficult going into
the new year."
Mr Christie said retailers selling "big-ticket items" in
particular had struggled this year.
"From walking around town and talking to shop owners over the
last couple of weeks, I can determine that it's been a
challenging year for many of our retailers. I encourage the
town and outlying community to consider buying local for
Christmas this year and to come to town for a fun shopping
"Bands and buskers will create a festive atmosphere for
shoppers and the mayor will be walking through town with his
Santa sack full of goodies.
"There will be entertainment in Harbour St, with wine bars
and eateries open for shoppers to unwind in and relax at the
end of the busy shopping day," Mr Christie said.
Business Development Oamaru chairman Lance Streeter said he
would always encourage people to buy local, but said
retailers should look to develop an "online presence" to to
broaden their sales base.