Students who support local businesses support Whitewater’s community

Small businesses in towns such as Whitewater are essential to consumers and the community. Recently Greenhouse Café and Frosty’s Frozen Custard have gone out of business.

While prices at a corporate powerhouse such as Walmart or Starbucks might be lower than a local business, as a community we must support local restaurants even if it means paying the extra dollar.

Students have to make do with a small budget and a busy schedule, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy a favorite spot in town. With Frosty’s gone and Greenhouse Café also closing its doors, students must find a new spot to study and socialize.

Whether it’s a coffee shop downtown or a restaurant like Jessica’s Family Restaurant, part of being a college student is about finding a community in which you belong.

Every Starbucks, McDonald’s and Qdoba has a predictable menu and familiar atmosphere. With a new place and new menu, we can make a place our own while at the same time keeping money in Whitewater.  Having small businesses in town are one of the bright spots about going to school in Whitewater.

For new freshmen trying to get a feel for the city’s pulse, going to a national chain for lunch a couple times a week like Subway would not be the same as going to a restaurant such as Jessica’s.

After the recent Occupy Movement, grumblings by Americans have grown increasingly louder about their distaste for corporate giants.

Whether or not you share these sentiments is irrelevant. The truth is that many are shying away from larger businesses and we should take this opportunity to embrace our local businesses.

Many who own small businesses in Whitewater have lived here for a long time or have attended school at UW-Whitewater.

Keeping money in Whitewater will help the city economically instead of feeding a national corporation in another city.

Going to a restaurant that isn’t a chain might also remind some students of home. While Whitewater might not have the most variety compared to other college towns, it does have a smattering of Asian and Mexican food.

The chances of a place like McDonald’s or Rocky Rococo’s having a meal similar to one made by your own mother are slimmer than a family-owned restaraunt having meals that might remind us of home.

We must explore our city and find our own special places to eat and hang out. There is nothing wrong with ordering Pizza Hut or eating at McDonald’s, but supporting local businesses and keeping money in the city we go to school in will help us as both consumers and community members.

Budgets are tight but if you want to venture out and try something new, take a stroll downtown and support local businesses. They will help you support the city and might just remind you of home.