February 6, 2013
Cash Mob ASHE will converge in West Jefferson at 11:30 Saturday for their second local business gang-shop, this time patronizing The Honey Hole and Boondocks Brewery.
Mob organizer Nancy Shannon of Fleetwood said the idea for Cash Mob ASHE came to her after she participated in a cash mob in Boone in November, which was covered by Carolina Country Magazine in their January edition. Shannon quickly formed an Ashe County group, and she and approximately 20 others met in Lansing on Jan. 19 for their first mobbing, which visited Lansing Foods, Pie on the Mountain and Phoenix Mountain Arts.
Cash Mobs are a fast-growing phenomenon. Cashmob.com, a Website which posts and maps scheduled cash mobs around the country and the globe, defines the concept: “with $20 in hand, members of a community come together to shop in a locally-owned establishment to support their favorite local business and support the area economy.”
Cash Mob ASHE is organized through a Facebook group at: http://www.facebook.com/groups/516875038333066/. The group patronizes Ashe County businesses that buy, sell and hire locally.
“Will do these once a month until tourist season, then take a break for the summer months,” said Shannon. “Our goal is to raise awareness locally about the need for the community to support its own, and to dispel the notion that they can’t afford not to shop at big box stores.”
“My hope is to do more education and have people think about the carbon footprint related to buying things made across the world versus made in U.S.,” she said.
For every $100 spent, big retail stores give back $14 to local economies, while local businesses return $45, according to the Institute for Self-reliance, a nonprofit advocacy group providing assistance to communities seeking local sustainability.