Orange County encourages local shopping
Orange County Commissioners approved a proclamation recognizing the “Shop Orange County First” campaign, an educational campaign initiated by local chambers of commerce meant to inform and encourage local residents to shop locally.
Campaign participant Dean Granger of Granger Chevrolet accepted the proclamation and credited committee chair Tad McKee for leading the campaign. “Tad has chaired this committee formed at the first of the year,” Granger said. “The mission is of this committee was to bring awareness to how important it is to keep your money in your community.”
He said the committee has been meeting since January, and Thursday, April 24, marks the Shop Orange County First kickoff event. He invited commissioners and the community to the Lamar State College-Orange nursing unit auditorium at 5:30 for a presentation that should last approximately an hour, according to Granger. The presentation will include speakers and a video created with the help of the Stark Foundation outlining the benefits of spending money in one’s own community rather than elsewhere.
“We think it will be enlightening to a lot of people,” Granger asserted. “This is just the launch of this campaign, the kickoff. The real work starts after the launch. This an educational campaign we are going to be doing for the next few years. This is a three to five year effort.”
He said the Chamber partnered with school and business leaders and will be able to go into schools and refineries to explain why community members should spend locally and show them the path their dollars take after leaving their pockets.
“We’re excited about it,” Granger said. “My belief is, this could make more of a positive impact for Orange County than maybe anything we’ve done in a long, long time. It’s going to take support from the masses for that to happen.”
Committee Chair Tad McKee said he would love to see a full house at the auditorium April 24.
“I encourage all of y’all to come out, everyone in the audience to come on out and get the word out,” said McKee. “If you can’t find what you are looking for within your own city, try to stay within your county. This is a win-win for all of Orange County if everyone just, before they think about going outside of Orange County, hesitate and try to find it in Orange County.”
Judge Carl Thibodeaux chimed in to add his support and request the presence of the community at Thursday’s kickoff.
“Once again, the program at Lamar only lasts an hour” Thibodeaux reminded the court. “If you have an opportunity to come by, please come by.”
— Sharon Brooks