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      Business slow on 'Small Business Saturday'

      We've heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, now there may be another shoppers' 'holiday' to add to your calendar: Small Business Saturday.

      Saturday was just the second year the national event has ever been held.

      The sound of customers entering is something small business owners in Iron Mountain take seriously. In these tough economic times, they're fighting a losing price battle with big box stores, and the flow of customers coming in can be slow. So, they're continuing to push the value they have that, they say, their competitors just can't touch.

      "The individuality and the customer service, you can't find elsewhere," says Main Street Manager Jonathan Ringel. "They're always willing to support, always willing to come in and help you out, willing to find a specific product for you."

      But Kingsley North jewelers in Iron Mountain says they got a slow start to Black Friday and aren't seeing more customers than usual on the second annual Small Business Saturday; a trend that can be frustrating.

      "There's so much hype over the box chains, and it's a little disheartening to know, yes the go-to place for your items is not the smaller local business," says employee Julie Hupper.

      Others say keeping the small businesses going is necessary to keep entire communities running.

      There are more than 200 local businesses in the Downtown Development Authority. Put them all together and that forms the largest employer in the area.

      While Kingsley North says they can't compete with the prices some big box stores are able to offer due to their ability to place large bulk orders, what they can offer is priceless.

      "You get what you pay for," Hupper says. "Those things mass produced like that with lower quality materials really are not going to be a family heirloom down the road like some of the things we create here."