Make a Dent in Your Holiday Shopping at These Small Business Saturday Events

Get into the holiday mood and score deals at countless local boutiques and eateries—oh, and watch out for those elves.
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Get plenty of sleep Friday night—you’ll need the energy to tackle the Small Business Saturday shopping events that are happening locally. (Photo by freestocks on Unsplash)

If you’ve been looking for a good time to shop local this holiday season, that time has come. Small Business Saturday is Nov. 27, and scores of neighborhood stores are offering deals, dishing out refreshments and throwing in giveaways and other perks. Plus, by shopping local, you’re more likely to skirt shipping delays caused by supply-chain issues. Make a day of it at these events—and may we suggest a shop-crawl?

Arlington & Falls Church Shopping Passport

Saturday, Nov. 27

Pop by any one of more than a dozen local shops and cafes—including Urban Farmhouse, Stylish Patina, Preservation Biscuit and passport organizer, One More Page Books—and you’ll receive a shopping passport ready for stamping. Once you have stamps from at least five places, turn your passport in for the chance to win a gift basket loaded with goodies. (Bonus: One More Page is also offering exclusive bookmarks for online orders placed on Small Business Saturday). // Locations vary, Arlington and Falls Church

Shop-Up Market at Sweet Science Coffee 

Saturday, Nov. 27 | 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Check out wares from local makers Blue Indian Trading Post, OneIBull Productions, SoulSoGood and Smile More Clothing at this pop-up event. And while you browse, sip on mulled wine, spiked cider or any of the caffeinated beverages poured out at Sweet Science Coffee. // Sweet Science Coffee, 2507 Franklin Road, Arlington

Vienna Shopping Pass and Owly’s Book Hunt

Saturday, Nov. 27

Vienna bookseller and wine shop Bards Alley has teamed up with the Vienna Business Association on a shopping pass useable at nearly 50 neighborhood retailers. Get your pass initialed Nov. 15 thru Dec. 31 at five shops and eateries—including Trace the Zero Waste Store, Just Like New, and Caboose Tavern—and submit it in a drawing for gift cards (minimum value is $25). And if you’re in the mood for a scavenger hunt, search several local shops on Small Business Saturday in a book hunt named for the Bards Alley mascot; if you find a book wrapped in brown paper, it’s yours. Still need more to do? Pop by Bards Alley between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. that day, and you’ll have the chance to meet one of these guest booksellers. // Locations vary, Vienna

Elf Scavenger Hunt in Fairfax

Saturday, Nov. 27

Revel in some holiday cheer in the City of Fairfax. Start at the Old Town Hall to acquaint yourself with the welcome station—there, you can pick up coffee and hot chocolate, sweet treats, a tote bag, an elf scavenger-hunt card (find five or more elves at participating shops and get the chance to win a $50 gift card) and an elf picture-frame kit. While you’re there, drop a letter to Santa in the mailbox and get up to three gifts wrapped for free. Also, bring along an extra unwrapped toy or two to donate to Toys for Tots. // 3999 University Drive, Old Town Hall, Fairfax

Alexandria Shop Small Week

Friday, Nov. 26 – Thursday, Dec. 2

The boutiques and eateries of Del Ray and Old Town are in the spotlight during this seven-day retail extravaganza, from Nov. 26-Dec. 2. Highlights include Plaid Friday, Museum Store Sunday, Cyber Monday and, of course, Small Business Saturday. Enjoy free parking at designated garages, let live music add a bop to your step, and find deals and gifts with purchase as you meander from shop to shop. (There are 50-plus independent boutiques in Alexandria) Oh, and if you see masked elves roaming around, don’t be alarmed—they’re on hand to dole out gift cards to people toting shopping bags every Saturday, now through Dec. 11. // Locations vary, Alexandria


Find a bevy of gift items from local makers at the recently opened Shop Made in Virginia, including these ornaments from Jess Cullen Ceramics. (Photo courtesy of Shop Made in VA)

Shop Made in Virginia

Saturday, Nov. 27 | 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Every day is small business day at Shop Made. This hub for local makers set up shop in D.C. in 2017, with five more District locations to follow, and recently opened its first Virginia shop. Find oodles of charming and funky gifts for everyone on your list, including your pet (who doesn’t need a catnip log?). On Small Business Saturday, savor complimentary beverages, catch indoor and outdoor pop-ups, and earn a $25 gift card with a $100 in-store purchase. And if you can’t make it out, online orders made Nov. 26-28 come with free shipping. // 1121 King St., Alexandria

Hometown Holidays and Small Brewery Sunday at Port City

Saturday, Nov. 27 | Noon – 5 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 28 | Noon – 8 p.m.

The parking lot at this Alexandria brewery transforms into a one-stop shop for your holiday-shopping needs on Saturday. Find products from some 30 local makers, and dig into a draft or food-truck fare (Captain Cookie and the Milkman, Bun’d Up) while you’re at it. Come back on Sunday for Port City’s take on Small Brewery Sunday. // 3950 Wheeler Ave., Alexandria

Small Brewery Sunday at Settle Down Easy

Sunday, Nov. 28 | Noon – 8 p.m.

No, there is not any shopping at this event. It’s purely an opportunity to “settle down” at the end of Thanksgiving week, with the added bonus of discounted cans and growlers (while supplies last). // Settle Down Easy Brewing Co., 2822 Fallfax Drive, Falls Church

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