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Community Manager

Share Your Favorite Small Business for a Chance to Win!

Is there a small business in your community that you absolutely love?  Share with our community by replying to this post, what makes this business so amazing for a chance to win $50 gift card and 50 Rewards Points!

 

1263x400-shopping-help (1).jpgWe know it has been hard for small businesses in 2020 and we want to celebrate them with you!

 

Official Rules can be found here:  https://community.aarp.org/t5/AARP-Rewards-Connect/AARP-Rewards-Community-Contest-Share-Your-Favorit... 

 

Contest dates run from Monday, November 16, 2020 - Friday, December 4, 2020.

AARPTeri
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Newbie

The Pottery Grill, Coaling, Alabama has a great tasting BBQ meal. They have been in business many years at the site of an old pottery store whose owner made all the pottery sold there. I recommend the BBQ and friendship of the owners. 

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Contributor

I couldn't find where to enter this contest but I know I have 45 minutes left until it ends.  The Country Fair White Elephant thrift store in Green Valley, AZ is the most amazing place.  They had to close from mid-March until October so I am very concerned about the amount that they will be able to give back to the community next year.  The White Elephant is typically staffed by 3 paid employees and 600 volunteers.  It is open Monday through Saturday from 9am to 12 noon.  Just 18 hours per week.  In 2019 they gave back to the community over $1.65 million in the form of grants to many organizations including the local elementary school, the local fire departments, food banks, junior dance company, Sheriff's Auxiliary to name just a few.  The White Elephant is an icon in our community!

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Kudos to Pamela's Health and Harmony in Margate, NJ.  A small business owned and operated masterfully by Pam who reacted immediately to assist customers during the first days of lockdown

-she truly got it and deserves recognition!

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Conversationalist

I'd like to recognize Paniolo's - a small restaurant in Kailua (Oahu). Food is so fresh, generous portions, and cool, friendly staff!

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Newbie

Legend Driven GMC of Lawton Oklahoma is having a drawing for a new car, valued up to $25,000on Dec. 21st,2020. The Dealership distributed Raffle Tickets to Nonprofits which sold them for $10 each. All the funds raised go directly to the Nonprofits. This is why I’m offering Legend Driven GMC for consideration.  

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Contributor

Base Camp in Mazomanie, WI is a great restaurant for the community.  Basic, but very interesting menu, not a deep fryer in the place, promotes wholesome foods, and employs local residents.  They have international dinner nights that give people an opportunity to try world cuisines.  They promote seasonal vegetables in the summer - don't miss the beet season!  Their community room is available for groups to meet.  Guest musicians stop in and play the piano in the dining room on occasion.  Local school district classes plan field trips there to learn how to cook.  It truly is a base camp for the community.

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UP Bra's That Fit in Escanaba, MI. is an amazing business.  Linda, the owner, is a cancer survivor and provides services and products for mastectomy and prosthetics as well as products for the general public.  The products are top quality and bras are personally fitted.  During this pandemic Linda renewed her nursing license and is working in nursing homes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan who are short staffed and dealing with covid outbreaks.  Linda's personality and giving attitude are a huge plus in our community and the Upper Peninsula.  During the Christmas shopping season she offers bonus gifts from a local candy factory.  

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Hardware Restaurant in North Aurora, IL is a small business that deserves noting.

 

They have a unique farm to plate menu and grow all of their herbs, hops and grains for food, brewing beer and distilling their own whiskey.  

 

During these trying times they have an enclosed outdoor patio with a fireplace on the outside of the building.  With socially distanced table and great hygiene protocol it is a secure and yet a romantic ambience.

 

The menu is stellar with all items either made on site or with a unique cooperative of restaurants and farm partners.  We ordered bone marrow from the appetizers, fish and chips with swordfish, and the best bison burger with five year aged cheddar I've ever tasted.

 

They make their own ice cream so for desert an apple style tart with cheddar cheese ice cream.  Always a unique experience and worth the trip.

 

Kuddos to the staff, great concept and safe environment for lunch or dinner.

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Contributor

I like Julio's Famous Pizzeria, in Fairless Hills, PA. It is a family owned business where you feel like part of the family. It's been in operation since I was a kid. They also serve a Ginacotti, which is kind of like a deep fried pizza. Very tasty, but I try not to get it too often now that I am over 50. I believe they even have an AARP coupon available.

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Info Seeker

This is not a small business, but a very important one to my community.  Our 911 operations facility moved to a new location this past year without interrupting their services.  My nephew's wife is a Supervisor there, and says the move was smooth.  As well as training new dispatchers.  She is my hero.

 

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Newbie

Chameleon Counters in Copperas Cove, TX, provides excellent customer service and knowledge with regards to reptiles, birds and exotic 'critters'. It is a Reptile retail business that has been owned and run by husband and wife for 21 years.  Husband passed away, but wife does an outstanding job of taking care of customers and families desiring a new pet.

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Super Contributor

A bit down because of the pandemic? Tired? Apprehensive? I have a wonderful remedy for all those ailments right here in Houston, Texas. I visit The Path of Tea, a wonderful tea shop. While I browse through the hundreds of organic teas, I remember past happiness: visiting with friends, family members, dear loved ones… I choose a few ounces of delicate tea to take home; then I order a cup of green tea and a few delicious cookies; sitting down in the fragrant shop, sipping, nibbling, I look around at the displays on the wall: a kimono, pictures of tea plants tidily growing on a mountain side, delicate art. On the shelves, beautiful tea sets and cups for sale; I have found here many delightful gifts along the years. A mere half hour in the amazing Path of Tea, I feel rejuvenated, all burdens lifted. This is the gift of going down the memory lane in peaceful familiar surroundings.

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Tonys Burgers in Lincoln, Ar are always open for us and willing to help with our special orders! Thanks!

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I'd like to recognize Smokin Toads BBQ Restaurant in Sarver, PA for all their hard work and fantastic food!

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Small business revenues have plunged during the Covid-19 pandemic and among the hardest hit and severely impacted has been jobs in the restaurant industry.  The Market Place Grill Cafe in Downey, California is one of the restaurants that have been severely impacted.  During the work week, a line would form at least 20 people deep during the busy lunch hours.  Lately, however, this is not the case.  

 

Market Place Grill has been my favorite lunch spot, and occasionally dinner spot for years.  The menu is casual American & Mediterranean  food with the philosophy serving healthy, simple and delicious foods with low sodium recipes and the extensive use of Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil.  The menu includes vegetarian, vegan, and clean food choices.  My favorites include a salmon salad, avocado panini and baklava.  Their menu includes breakfast with numerous choices such as french toast and eggs, to a greek vegetarian omelet and lunch menu include greek wraps or pita to chicken tenders, burgers and ribeye salad.  All the salads have a wonderful greek olive oil based dressing served in an oversized bowl.  Tasty, healthy and esthetically pleasing, this local favorite is delicious.  

 

Market Place Grill is a great place to catchup with old friends, new friends and also to share a meal with your family.  What makes this place so special?  Not just the wonderful and healthy food, and exquisite desserts and but also the wonderful people that work there.  All employees are dressed in black slacks and a black shirt with a black apron along with a smile.  

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Contributor

I’d like to honor my favorite small business in Harrisburg, NC.  Sunflour Baking Company offers a wonderful fresh food experience with great beverages, sandwiches, and exceptional sweet treats.  They are very involved in the community and have been extremely supportive in donating to local charities  including my personal connection to the Greater Charlotte Autism Speaks as I  have a son on the spectrum.  Sunflour Baking Company has 4 local bake shops in the Charlotte Area.  Best place, best people, best food, best heart ❤️ 
Submitted by Barbara Tappy

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Newbie

My most favorite local business is "THE ORIGINAL GARDEN OF BEADIN' in Garberville California. Through thick and thin, for 35 plus years, Charlotte has kept an impressive bead store... and it is so much more. It is a hub in a small community, it has been a great place of employment for so many woman. There are bead classes, online shopping and a selection of beads that can't be beat. It is beautiful! She is an active community member that gives back to the community in so many ways. 

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Contributor

Lots of great businesses in Seattle. Two come to mind that do good for the community. Half Price Books and Silver Platters. Both are about recycling old Books and Music.  HPB has thousands of books, they buy and sell. Silver Platters does the same service except for old music, records, tapes, CDs!  They have been around forever supporting the needs of the locals, keeping folks employed and giving great bargains to all!

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Newbie

My favorite community business is Sage and Attachments in Flemington, NJ . Not only do they have wonderful items for children, clothing, jewelry  for women and gifts that are just great but the owner is constantly finding ways to give back to the community. Thieve two sister stores are great and the owner deserves this recognition.

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Contributor

My favorite small business is connecting grandchildren with grandparents in a fun, exciting way.. through good old fashioned snail mail.  Such a unique gift for birthdays and holidays -- Snail Mail for Kids has created a mascot, Sunny the Mail Snail, who sends kids their very own letter every week.  All kids love mail so much and hearing from a friend every week is perfect for kids stuck at home or lonely throughout this pandemic.  Plus, it keeps kids reading and learning about the world too.  Created by an "over 50" mom who was looking for a creative way to get her son reading, now she has started her own business with letters going to kids all over the world.  She turned Sunny the Mail Snail into a fun little plush snail kids can snuggle with while they read their mail.  We all love mail and everyone needs something special in the mail every week.  The kids solve secret codes, collect little treasures, color bookmarks and more. It's a really fun small business putting smiles on faces everywhere.  I hope I haven't posted too many pictures... Facebook1.9 -1 E.png1200x1200 FB_E.pngsunsnail(1of1)-11.jpgsunsnail(1of1)-44.jpgsun(1of1).jpgSnail Mail Pic 2.jpgMama Ashley Pic.JPGGrandma.jpg

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One of my favorite restaurants in Athens, Ohio, is The Village Bakery.  They bake wonderful breads, serve salads, sandwiches, quiche and delicious baked deserts.  All the ingredients are local and organic. It is a friendly place to meet with a friend and share a meal.   In addition,  Chris and Bob support the local farmers who provide the produce used in the restaurant, even by demonstrating against possible polluters.  In addition, The Bakery uses solar panels and geothermal energy to provide the energy for the restaurant's heat and electricity. Bob and Chris are truly active members in our community, and by their example, leaders in preserving our environment, combating climate change and nourishing our stomachs and our spirits.

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Basil & Rose in Bountiful, Utah (about 10 minutes north of downtown Salt Lake City) is owned by a fellow single mother over 50. Her store focuses on plants you can eat! But not only does she sell plants and seeds to establish your own garden, she sells all kinds of fun gifts relating to edible plants, fruits & vegetables, gardening, bees, flowers, and all kinds of fun things! She also hosts other small businesses and crafters, and offers classes when COVID restrictions permit. If you're ever in the SLC area, her store is worth the extra few minutes drive!

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Contributor

My favorite small business is Eso Wan Books in Los Angeles, California.  They are a great black bookstore and community gathering center.  They have wonderful events, authors as speakers and afro-centric gifts.

 

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Regular Contributor

Soon after moving from the Midwest to the Phoenix, AZ area, we discovered the fantastic Greek & Italian Restaurant called Dino’s in the suburb of Goodyear. It is family owned and operated and has the most wonderful variety of Greek and Italian specialty food choices as well as superior service. I can truthfully say dining at Dino’s is absolutely addicting. Peter, the owner is so welcoming and friendly to all and has a good sense of humor. Our family has definitely lost count as to how often we go there. It is well worth it.  ----- Lynn Assimacopoulos

 

 

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Conversationalist

Our favorite here in Kailua, (Oahu) Hawaii is Paniolo's. There's a delicious, fresh array of ingredients to pick & put together a burrito, box, or bowl.  Portions are generous. Staff is great.

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Regular Contributor

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Pine Hill Nursery outside of Elk Rapids in northern Michigan is like walking through a magical place. Full of beautiful flowered walkways and numerous greenhouses with every flower, vegetable, plant, and herbs there is. Love seeing the fairy garden section and fish pond.

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The Dragongate Chinese Restaurant in Pembroke Pines, FL is my favorite local business. They have been here for more than 30 years and consistently have great food with generous portions. They also have yearly celebrations for the community.

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Contributor

Tea by Two in Bel Air, MD is a quaint little shop and restaurant offering tea from around the world.  A special place for tea lovers.

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Sunny Day Cafe in Bel Air, MD is one of the best family diners I have ever been to. Delicious breakfast and lunch items including crepes, omelets, sandwiches and salads. Friendly service and prices are very reasonable. Check them out!

 

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