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City Foundry STL gives small businesses much-needed boost

About 20 businesses participated in Saturday's event

ST. LOUIS — On Small Business Saturday, the WintrMrket event at the City Foundry STL gave local businesses a place to show off their goods.

"We are a local apparel brand that focuses on everything there is to love about St. Louis," said Sami Maurer owner of Series Six Apparel.

From clothes to jewelry to sweets, small businesses opened up pop-up shops from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m on Saturday at City Foundry STL. The event was organized by Collections by Joya, a jewelry business started by a St. Louis woman that has gained attention from nationwide retailers.

"Twenty local businesses here today and we've been really excited for this winter festival as a safe way to support local businesses on Small Business Saturday," said Will Smith, City Foundry's Asset Manager.

Held outdoors and social distancing protocol in place, small businesses used the time to reconnect with customers during a tough year.

RELATED: Local businesses rely on year-end shoppers to make it to 2021

"I like it. I love the outdoor vending. I love the space, and I love the location and I love all these entrepreneurs. This is dope," said Shawn Giles, a customer and entrepreneur.

"It has been a challenge for sure but we tried to find creative ways to continue to sell shirts and market our brand," said Maurer.

Business owners said supporting small businesses is supporting St. Louis.

"Because actually, local business is what makes our community strong from a business standpoint and from relationships, small business is the foundation of our community it really is," said Pat Upchurch, owner of Patty's Cheesecakes.

City Foundry STL, which plans to open this spring, will feature a food hall and public market along with additional restaurants, shops, entertainment, office space and more.

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