COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Local business owners work to encourage people to shop local, and a successful program made a return to keep business coming.
Old Colorado City and downtown Colorado Springs used Ambassadors to help shoppers to find what they were looking for. The volunteers walked in pairs with maps and other information helping tourists and causal shoppers that don't frequent the areas.
For Saboz owner, Linda Bridger, business has been very good compared to past years, and she said customers seem to enjoy having the ambassadors available, but that the economy must be healing too.
"This year has been a whole lot more fun. Ladies are coming in and helping each other pick things out. They are enjoying spending money.
Where as before it was like, 'I know I need a new pair of shoes, but I don't know.' that sort of thing," said Bridger.
There are a variety of local shops, and one of those is Escape Velocity Comics, and ambassadors were able to advise shoppers who might not have known about the comic book shop in downtown Colorado Springs. Shoppers liked what they saw.
"They are just really surprised. It is a great surprise for them to get to reconnect with their old comics and find new ones too. To them it's like finding some great gem," said employee CJ Hackett of the new customer experience.
Last minute shoppers were good to business owners too. In downtown Colorado Springs several shops were open the afternoon of Christmas eve, and parking was packed.
Shop owners say a main complaint is the lack of parking, and they remain customers there are several parking garages that are cheaper than the meters and not very far away.