Supporting CY businesses in 2011

By Barb Elder

February is a month dedicated to the celebration of relationships. And when you think about it, relationships are at the heart of almost everything in life: the delight you take in your family and friends, your success at work, your enjoyment of the community you live in, and your connection to the place where you worship or the activities you enjoy. But do relationships have anything to do with the landscape of Cooper Street and Young Ave?

Absolutely! How do all of those businesses that are an important part of the fabric of our neighborhood stay afloat is these difficult economic times? In part, due to the relationship they have with us, the residents of CY. This issue of the LampLighter is dedicated to nurturing that relationship.

Like relationships in life, the businesses in our community have a life cycle. Some move into the `hood and are here for the long hall. They invest in the community, and we give them our business, not only because they offer goods and services that we need and enjoy, but also because their presence makes CY a better place to live. Some businesses are here for a season. We enjoy them while we have them, but for a whole host of reasons they move on. And some it seems we barely get to know before we have to say goodbye.

With recent business closings in the area, like The Reef, Grace, Lux, and Two Chicks and a Broom, we can think that the economy is going to get the best of us – that perhaps our thriving district may not weather the storm. But this sort of shuffle is nothing new and certainly not the end for Cooper-Young. How could we be discouraged with great new businesses like Urban Outfitters and Cortona (our new Italian restaurant) deciding to call CY home and with Victory Bicycle and Charm Boutique rising from the ashes of the CYCA office fire? But still there is a lot that we can do as residents to insure that our businesses stay here and thrive.

If you are like me, you probably have your list of places where you go to get the things you need and want. You’ve built a relationship with these places and you return to them often. As these places come to mind, I wonder how many of them are located in or near CY? There is nothing wrong with going outside the neighborhood for your shopping needs, but we hope you will consider all that our local businesses have to offer.
On pages 16 – 19 you will find a directory of CY businesses and a handful of businesses outside our borders who, nevertheless, support our community and the LampLighter. As you peruse this list, you may be surprised to discover what is right here in your own backyard. We encourage you to keep this issue handy and use it as a resource in the coming year. The next time you have plumbing needs, you might be happy to learn that there are plumbers available down the street. If you have pets, you might consider some of the options for pet care and supplies that are less than a mile from your home. When you want to grab a bite to eat, why not keep your car parked in the driveway and walk to one of our fine restaurants? Whether you are looking for clothing, antiques, child care, home décor, books, coffee, entertainment, plants, realtors, places to volunteer, or congregations to worship with, you will find many options right here in our Insiders Guide to CY.

So we challenge you to look through this list and begin to build some new relationships in 2011. In doing so you will be getting to know your neighbors, helping your local businesses succeeded, saving on gas money, and gaining time to invest in more important things than waiting in traffic.

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