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How to Support Small Businesses in Salem, Massachusetts

House of the Seven Gables

Salem’s small businesses typically rely on spring and summer business to get through the quieter winter months, and this year our support is more important than ever.

Shop small this holiday season and purchase gifts from local retailers, or consider giving restaurant gift cards to family and friends. Giving financial support or time to local nonprofits, leaving positive reviews for your favorite Salem businesses, and remembering to tip generously while dining out can help get our business community through this difficult time. Find more ways to show your support in the list below:

Restaurants

Behind You 
Behind You is a needs-based emergency assistance fund designed to support employees when they have a medical hardship and are unable to work due to illnesses or injuries. The organization is currently working to fund additional support as needed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Find ways to donate to Behind You at behindyouinc.org.

Gulu-Gulu Cafe, 247 Essex Street
Gulu-Gulu Cafe has also launched an employee fund in support of all of their front of house and back of house staff ahead of their winter closure. Funds collected are pooled and evenly distributed among staff and donations can be made online, over the phone, or in person. If you prefer to support Gulu’s staff by leaving a larger tip, those amounts will be evenly distributed among staff as well. Learn more at gulugulucafe.com.

Ledger Restaurant, 125 Washington Street
Click here to read a statement by Chef Matt O’Neil in support of Salem’s restaurant industry. Ledger Basket will be available Wed-Sunday for delivery & curbside pick-up. Ledger will also offer indoor dining on Friday and Saturday nights offering a 3-course set menu with seatings at 5:30 and 7:30 for those who still want to dine in. Visit ledgersalem.com for the latest updates.

Shopping

Wicked Good Books, 215 Essex Street
Shopping at Wicked Good Books means supporting our local independent book store! Order any book from Wicked Good Books’ page on bookshop.org or stop by their Essex Street location to browse a curated collection of new and used books, toys, puzzles, and gifts in Salem. Gift cards are also available, and information about the shop’s GoFundMe is available at wickedgoodbookstore.com.

Order from Salem Shops Online
Most Salem retailers have online stores (find a complete list here). If you are unable to make it downtown, consider ordering from some of your favorite Salem shops online. Contact individual businesses to inquire about virtual shopping appointments, events, and more, and remember to leave positive reviews to further support our small shops.

Museums & Attractions

Essex National Heritage Area
Essex Heritage provides opportunities for locals and visitors to learn about the 34 cities and towns that fall within Essex National Heritage Area through annual events like Trails & Sails, guided walking tours, lectures, and more. Support Essex Heritage by participating in their events or by making a donation here. Learn more at essexheritage.org.

The House of the Seven Gables, 115 Derby Street
The House of the Seven Gables relies on funds raised from admission fees, event rentals, and museum shop purchases to support their dual mission of welcoming people of all backgrounds to experience their museum and historic site while running settlement programs for local immigrants. You can support The Gables by making a donation in any amount, becoming a member, or taking a virtual tour. Learn more at 7gables.org.

Historic New England
Historic New England manages two properties in Salem- the Phillips House Museum and the Gedney House. While currently closed, Historic New England is still providing funds necessary to maintain these historic properties and their collections, along with a number of sights across New England. Consider participating in one of Historic New England’s virtual events or making a donation. Learn more at historicnewengland.org.

Virtual Events
Lots of Salem museums, attractions, psychics, and walking tours have been hosting virtual events. Browse our calendar or download our app for event schedules and be sure to follow local businesses on social media for all the latest updates as virtual events are planned.

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