By Keysha Drexel
Film crews from a MSNBC business show interviewed shop owners in Mountain Brook recently for an upcoming episode aimed at giving other communities ideas about how to best encourage “shop local” initiatives.
The crew from “Your Business” started out at Continental Bakery in English Village on the morning of Oct. 18 and wrapped up filming for the episode at The Pants Store in Crestline Village, talking to owners at A’mano, Lamb’s Ears, Ex Voto Vintage and Olexa’s throughout the day.
“The stars of the show are the business owners,” said David Foster, one of the show’s producers. “I’m here to tell the story of the people, the small business owners, who are doing this job day in and day out and understand the importance of shopping local.”
Foster worked with Suzan Doidge and Hannon Davidson from the Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce to line up the interviews with the Mountain Brook business owners for the episode, which should air sometime in November.
The chamber encouraged residents and merchants to wear their “Shop Local” T-shirts while shopping during the TV crew’s visit to the villages.
The chamber organizes “Shop Local” events on Saturdays to encourage people to support Mountain Brook stores, Doidge said.
“It’s exciting to be able to show the rest of the country what we’ve been doing here in Mountain Brook for a long time,” she said. “We think Mountain Brook does a great job of supporting its small business owners.”
Foster said he heard about Mountain Brook from a friend who is from the city.
“He suggested I call the chamber, and when I found out about the ‘Shop Local’ initiative, it seemed like a perfect fit for the show,” he said.
Foster said he finds it interesting that in an area that doesn’t have a traditional main street, there is still a concerted effort by residents to shop locally and an effort by the business community to bring people to the villages.
“We just want other people out there watching the show to know the kinds of things that are working in communities like Mountain Brook,” he said.
The show focuses on issues facing entrepreneurs, Foster said.
The Mountain Brook episode will air during the weeks before Small Business Saturday on Nov. 29, he said.
“Those weeks leading up to Small Business Saturday and the shopping season right after Thanksgiving is a crucial time for small business owners,” he said.
Lynn Ritchie, owner of A’mano, said she was thrilled to have Foster and his crew in town to talk about Mountain Brook’s “Shop Local” initiatives.
“I think it shows what a wonderful chamber we have, what wonderful residents we have and how we all work together to support each other, because we all know that we benefit from a strong small business community,” Ritchie said.
Look for the Mountain Brook episode of “Your Business” on MSNBC next month. The show airs at 6:30 a.m. on Sundays.