By Erin Freeman | Lynnwood Times Staff
Businesses in Downtown Edmonds, looking for a way to stay connected to the community during the statewide shutdown, have banded together to support one another.
Founded in 2014 by five small women-owned businesses, Edmonds Localvore is a bi-annual event encouraging shopping locally, through a day of discounts and novel activities at participating locations. As businesses have closed their doors in response to the coronavirus pandemic, the community of retailers created an online marketplace as an opportunity for Edmonds brick-and-mortar shops to continue with online sales.
“We all had that feeling of a rising tide lifts all boats,” said Kimberly Koenig, owner of Rogue Boutique. “We want people to know that our community is still here and small businesses are still here and offer people opportunities to still shop locally.”
Koenig and Marketing and eCommerce Strategist Carrie Hulbert of the Edmonds Downtown Alliance, an organization that supports businesses through funding and resources, worked together to create a website of “survival kits” curated from Downtown Edmonds businesses.
“We put it together after seeing Pike Place Market had put together some boxes of their offerings from vendors, and we were like that’s a great idea,” said Koenig. “We took the Edmonds version of it.”
The survival kits, named Edmonds Boxes of Local Love, are designed and assembled individually by each retailer and are themed with products intended to improve daily life in social isolation to make it feel more manageable. Survival kit themes vary from coffee, art supplies, beauty and spa treatments to books, home decor, fashion pieces and healthy living supplied by over 20 Edmonds businesses.
“People just really wanted a way to help local businesses and local vendors,” said Koenig. “I’ve heard people say – ‘I don’t care what’s in the kit, I just wanted to do something.'”
Koenig says that the community response has been remarkable. With the owner of Walnut Street Coffee Pam Stuller writing website content and Verb Photography’s Angie Phelps managing photography, the team is working to keep up with kit demand.
“In the first 48 hours, we had already almost sold out and had to scramble to put new kits up. We’re continuing to scramble to get more kits up weekly,” explained Koenig. “We’re doing two photography shoots a week right now to get the pieces up.”
The cost of each survival kit ranges, dependent on the specified price of the retailer that curated it. To view Edmonds Localvore’s available Boxes of Local Love, visit https://www.edmondslocalvore.com/shop. Sold out kits and new boxes are replenished and added regularly.