This is something that many independent retailers deal with on a regular basis. Here are a few things to think about the next time you are planning an out of town shopping trip instead of shopping right here in Vernon. Local businesses are staffed by local residents; your friends and neighbors. You will get better service from people you know and who know you. Most local businesses are owned and managed by people who live in our community and who have a vested interest in the local economy, organizations and programs. Many of them are one-of-a-kind businesses that provide our community with its one-of-a-kind character. The healthier a retail or restaurant or service sector is, the more attractive it is to new businesses coming into the area, which creates more job opportunities and a healthier economy all around. Other considerations that are an increasing concern are more environmental: air pollution and gas consumption. The short of it is that buying local creates a thriving community.