Small Business Saturday, art walk event, drew customers downtown
FARMINGTON – One sign business is booming in the Studio Bake Shoppe at the Artifiacts 302 gallery is when they start to run out of milk.
Owner Bev Taylor left the cash register to buy eight more gallons of milk for a long line of patient diners waiting for the coffee and baked goods that bring people to the place even on a quiet day. And Nov. 26 was no quiet day.
“We’re doing great,” Taylor said after ringing up a couple more customers around 4 p.m. as the golden afternoon sun slid through the windows. “We started at 9 a.m. this morning that’s when we open.”
So, for the crew at Artifacts, at 302 E. Main Street, the Small Business Saturday and the Holiday Art Walk events hosted that day ran concurrently, even though the art walk was billed as an afternoon affair. Artists set up shop in the family lumberyard-turned art gallery.
Artist jennifur e gilmore of jennifur e studios said she arrived in the afternoon and found many customers were engaged in the event – and she said she made some sales of intricately-crafted gourd art and some etched glassware.
The start of a setting sun didn’t slow down the folks who came in to the HEart Gallery space at 307 W. Main Street to check out the art on sale, and some artwork on display by Heights Middle School students.
“It’s been steady all day,” said co-owner and local photographer Patrick Hazen. “We’ve had some sales, that’s good.”
Event organizer Downtown Coordinator/Economic Development Specialist Karen Lupton said she was happy with number of people who came downtown to support local merchants and artists.
“I think overall the event went really well,” Lupton said.
Anecdotally, the Small Business Saturday and Art Walk events held last weekend were a success, judging by the foot traffic.
It will be a while before the actual financial effect of this year’s gross receipts tax holiday event can be measured due to the way the New Mexico Department of Taxation and Revenue collects the tax it gave a one-day holiday on Nov.26.
“The way it works is that the businesses that took part will take a deduction when they file their returns for November, and those aren’t due until Dec. 25,” department spokesperson Charlie Moore explained.
Each year the state gives a one-day tax break on purchases like toys, games, electronics, books, sporting goods and more sold by New Mexico-based businesses with no more than 10 employees.
The businesses are allowed to deduct gross receipts tax on sales on qualifying items. The purchases also have to be under $500 per item, and gift cards don’t qualify for the exemption.