Local businesses in Sunderland are enticing shoppers with an array of enticing offers as they step into the spotlight.

Small Business Saturday, an annual celebration dedicated to highlighting independent traders, is scheduled to take place on Saturday, December 2nd.

Sunderland’s shops, cafés, bakeries and performance spaces are enticing shoppers with everything from discounts and free tickets to complimentary food sampling and the chance to win gift cards.

Sunderland BID has partnered with Maker & Faber – two new commercial buildings in the heart of Riverside Sunderland – and Sunderland City Council to promote the event and, in the days leading up to it, will be revealing some of the offers on a big screen in the city’s Keel Square.

Among them is the chance to be entered into a prize draw to win a £100 gift card at one of the city’s leading menswear shops; Aphrodite, at Vine Place.

The independent menswear store is one of around 150 small businesses signed up to the Sunderland City Gift Card scheme, including Harrison & Brown Furniture, at Holmeside.

Anyone who purchases at the store on Small Business Saturday will be entered into a draw to win a £100 Sunderland Gift Card, which can be used in-store or across any of the scheme’s participating businesses.

Other offers include free takeaway hot chocolate for the first 20 customers at The Sweet Petite at High Street West, which is also handing out free samples of its newest Christmas bakes and giving a 10 per cent discount on orders over £15 to anyone who mentions Small Business Saturday on purchasing.

Neighbouring Sunshine Co-Operative – which stocks locally sourced food products – is holding a tasting and making event on Small Business Saturday from 11am until 3pm.

Shoppers will be able to learn how to make Christmas-themed canapés and dips using local products, which will be showcased on local pottery made by Mark Barfoot Pottery.

And the first five customers to spend more than £20 at Diego’s Joint, Norfolk Street, on Small Business Saturday will get a free ticket (valued at £15) to any of its upcoming comedy shows.

Sharon Appleby, Chief Executive of Sunderland BID, said the event is “a great opportunity” to remind shoppers of the breadth and diversity of the city’s independent retailers.

“They bring shoppers a range of goods and services they won’t find anywhere else,” she said, “and they also make a vital contribution to the local economy so it’s really important we give them our support.”

For full details of all Small Business Saturday offers visit https://www.sunderlandbid.co.uk/blog/small-business-saturday

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