National Small Business Week encourages Copper Country residents to shop locally

The Keweenaw Chamber of Commerce says locally owned businesses are integral to Copper Country communities, such as Superior Graphics and Down Wind Sports.
Published: May. 1, 2023 at 8:16 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Residents are encouraged to shop locally during National Small Business Week, and Houghton is no exception.

The Keweenaw Chamber of Commerce (KCC) says these locally owned businesses are integral to Copper Country communities.

“Small businesses are vital to the community,” said KCC President Penny Milke. “When we shop small businesses, we support our friends and neighbors, and the people who own their own businesses.”

Small businesses are in constant competition with online markets to provide goods and services. One such business is Superior Graphics, which focuses on screen printing and embroidering. It offers clothing, blankets and more with custom designs. Opened in 1999 by Co-Owner Gary Gutshall and his wife, Superior Graphics is nearing 25 years in business.

Gutshall says their effort to provide the best goods they can is what keeps customers returning.

“Quality, quality, quality,” said Gutshall. “That’s really what it came down to for growing our business. Because of our reputation, people will come in and they will know that things are going to be done on time, and it going to be done right the first time.”

Another small business is Down Wind Sports. They provides sporting equipment for all seasons, including bicycles and skiing equipment.

While sporting equipment can be purchased online, the owner says it is not the same as seeing and testing the equipment in person before purchasing.

“They can come in, they can try on ski boots, they can try on different clothing pieces,” said Down Wind Sports Owner Arnie Ronis. “They can test-drive bikes. We can mount skis for them. We can do a lot of things that you can’t get online.”

While small business week ends on Saturday, these shops and others will be glad to see you through their door any time.