BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Thanksgiving comes in just one week, and signs of the holiday season are all over Baltimore. Festivities kicked off across the city Thursday night– from Santa’s arrival at the Inner Harbor to the shopping season kickoff in Pigtown.

Kai Jackson has more on the city’s push to attract holiday visitors.

It’s called the Miracle on Main Streets, a city-wide effort to encourage Baltimoreans and area residents to shop local for the holidays.

“It’s obviously great to shop locally because the money stays in your neighborhood. It doesn’t go to some crazy corporation,” said Jason Smith, Spiritas Wine Store.

The city says shopping locally works. Leaders point to 97 new businesses opening in 2013, which they say generated some 241 new jobs.

“Strong businesses, strong communities, strong families and also strong individuals,” said Sen. Verna Jones-Rodwell, (D) Md. Legislature.

Shopping local is a simple concept. But Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake says there’s a bigger picture to shopping on main streets, and that’s to bring neighborhoods and businesses together.

“We get more tax dollars. We get more things done that we need.  And if you complain about something, it gets taken care of, but if you don’t support, nothing will happen,” said Bernard Williams, of Pigtown.

At the National Aquarium, the Waterfront Partnership kicked off the holiday shopping drive, underscoring the message that investing locally yields big dividends.

There are a number of themed events scheduled in Baltimore that will happen leading up the holidays.


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