‘Buy It In Montgomery County’ campaign launched

Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort, right, speaks at the launch of the county’s campaign “Buy It In Montgomery” to help support and promote local businesses that were impacted due to COVID-19. The announcement of the campaign was announced at the Chatter Box boutique in Amsterdam that has been in business for about 50 years. (The Leader-Herald/Briana O’Hara)

AMSTERDAM — Montgomery County representatives and business leaders are taking initiatives to support and promote local businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19.

Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort, Montgomery County Business Development Center CEO Ken Rose and other business leaders launched its “Buy It In Montgomery” campaign and unveiled the new logo on Friday at the Chatter Box to continue to help businesses through the reopening process after being closed for a few months, and to raise the awareness of the importance of supporting the local economy.

“This has been a tough year for everyone in some way shape or form and some worse than others, but I think none worse than our small businesses in Montgomery County and across upstate New York, especially the smaller ma and pa type of businesses,” Ossenfort said. “So when talking with our economic development office we decided to focus our efforts this year on promoting existing businesses and entering into a campaign to Buy It In Montgomery County.”

Rose said in the past three months businesses have struggled, but are moving forward. He said their goal at the BDC has been to keep businesses alive by providing various loans and potential grant opportunities. They have also taken steps to keep residents and workers in the county safe by purchasing and distributing masks. Saratoga Horse Works in Amsterdam has also shifted gears from manufacturing horse equipment to making PPE’s.

“We want to continue this work for local businesses,” Rose said.

He said residents in the county should expect to start seeing the new logo, “Buy It In Montgomery” throughout the county at a lot of small businesses. The logo will be shown in windows, various store fronts and various businesses in the county.

“What we really want to do is raise awareness to the community, support our small businesses and have the community also support our small businesses, so we can rejuvenate our economy,” Rose said.

In addition to the new logo, Rose said, they are working with another local company Engines of Creation, are going to do a business directory that will be an essential depository for any business within the county that wants to put their listing in there. That initiative will be launching at a later date.

“I think the issues is making people aware of what’s out there. Sometimes you don’t realize what you have in your own backyard,” Ossenfort said.

“We have been in business since 1971, and this is the first time we have been closed for three months. It had been a hardship. We have used the time to update our shop, adopt social media platforms and new marketing techniques. In order to stay in business, we must be creative and cater to our loyal customers while reaching out to a new clientele,” said Antonia Lanzi-D’Agostino and Amy Lanzi, co-owners of Chatter Box boutique. “Small businesses like ours are the backbone of the community and in order to sustain relationships we must stay innovative and offer specialty brands at very reasonable prices. The big box stores grew around us increasing traffic to the area, yet our customers seek a unique shopping experience and return for our personal service. Stop in to see us, buy it in Montgomery County, and visit the small family owned businesses who are the heart of the community.”

By Paul Wager

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