The owner of Mimi’s Fresh Tees in downtown Portland wants people to come back downtown for their shopping.
PORTLAND, Ore. — “Small Business Saturday” encourages people to shop at local small businesses — a sentiment Portland business owners are embracing after a rough few years.
Kamelah Adams, owner of Mimi’s Fresh Tees in downtown Portland, said she hopes people will come back downtown. It has a new temporary pop-up store at SW 10th Avenue and Morrison.
“It’s vital for people to come to downtown Portland — and if you don’t, you’re saying ‘bye bye’ to a lot of unique small businesses,” Adams said.
Adams started Mimi’s Fresh Tees in 2018. She makes tees focused on social justice and female empowerment. She had a shop in Old Town but said she had to move because of crime in the area.
“We’re trying to spread some love and light and hope in the downtown area because it’s been tough the last couple of years,” Adams said. “Buying small means you’re directly supporting families who live in Portland.”
Soobien Oh was shopping at Mimi’s Fresh Tees on Saturday. He said that he prioritizes supporting small businesses.
“We want to make conscious choices about where we’re spending our money and what better way to spend it than to spend it locally and with people who we know are doing good things for our community ,” Oh said.
The Japanese American Museum of Oregon on Northwest Flanders Street has a new pop-up shop featuring Japanese-inspired gifts and crafts.
“Most of them are made by Japanese and Japanese American artists who are here in the country,” said Elissa Dingus, Director of Education Engagement.
Dee Tory is the owner of WUL in downtown Portland. It is a gallery space with art and clothing. He is an artist and a designer who also has a foundation that raises money for scholarships for students.
“Small businesses can be niche markets that need to be supported in order to grow and become bigger and have a voice in what they exist for,” Tory said.