Pascagoula leaders give big boost to small businesses

By Patrice Clark- bio | email

PASCASGOULA, MS (WLOX) – Some new businesses in Pascagoula are getting a little extra support in this bad economy.

City leaders, the Chamber of Commerce, and th Main Street Association have teamed up to launch an outreach businesses program.  Each group takes turns visiting store owners to help give them a boost. And business owners are thrilled about the plan.

Main Street members Rebecca Davis and Jennifer Flanagan were the first two customers ready to buy at Shopaholics Friday morning. They also welcomed new store owner Tonya Frederickson to the neighborhood.

Frederickson, who opened four months ago, couldn't wait to show the ladies her new items.

"I just feel they care by coming in, and shopping with me, and getting the word out there," Frederickson said.

The group also stopped at Lounge Lizard Outdoor Living to shake hands and Crazy Tomatoes restaurant to taste some of southern cuisine.

More than 20 new businesses have set up shop in Pascagoula this year. Davis said a couple of stores have closed due to financial hardships. So Pascagoula officials are making a special effort to keep the remaining stores open and lure more investors to the city.

"We are actively getting them involved, and getting them to send us their logos, and what they have on their daily specials," Davis said. "We are encouraging them to get this information to us, so that we can get it on Facebook and the city's website."

The kind words, visits and free publicity are very much appreciated by small business owners.

"We need local support, and we need to get Pascagoula pride back again, and it all starts with our elected leaders," store owner Steve Loper said.

City officials are planning to visit different business owners at least once a month.

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