Closure of Mars Clothing A Sad Sign of Modern Times

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Mars Clothing on Court Street - Part of the Downtown for 12 years
Mars Clothing on Court Street - Part of the Downtown for 12 years

THUNDER BAY – BUSINESS – James Nigro, the owner of Mars Clothing on Court Street is winding up his shop.

In a social media post, Nigro stated: “After 12 years of unforgettable experiences, I find this the hardest thing I’ve had to do in my life. It is with a heavy heart that I must announce the upcoming closure of my beloved mars retail store on February 28th.

“Let me be candid, this decision was based purely on numbers and the stark reality that it’s no longer sustainable. I am deeply in debt due to keeping this dream alive. I am proud of my will to keep it going for as long as I could in the face of challenges during Covid, CEBA loans, inflation, a doorbell to mitigate theft, and street construction”.

“My dream was always to give to our community a unique and inclusive space but now the numbers are telling a clear story – it’s time to stop sacrificing”.

The closure of Mars retail store serves as a poignant reminder of the challenges faced by local businesses, especially in the context of a changing economic landscape and unforeseen external factors. It also underscores the importance of community support and shopping local to sustain and nurture small businesses that contribute to the unique character of a community.
Nigro adds, “It’s a difficult reality to face, but it’s important to me that you all understand the full picture. Your belief in Mars, your support, and your patronage have been the driving forces behind every decision I’ve made, and for that, I am eternally grateful. The friendships I’ve forged with what were once strangers, now friends, have enriched my life in ways that are hard to articulate.
“I will be at Mars until February 28th. I would love to be able to see you all one last time. As we celebrate the holidays, your support of our store and sharing this post would mean a lot to me. Let’s give everyone, both familiar and new faces, a chance to experience Mars together”.

How Does Shopping Locally Help Thunder Bay?

Shopping locally can have several positive impacts on the Thunder Bay economy and the community as a whole. Here are some ways in which supporting local businesses contributes to the economic well-being of the city:

  1. Job Creation: Local businesses are significant contributors to employment in the community. When residents choose to shop locally, it helps sustain and create jobs, reducing unemployment rates and fostering economic stability.
  2. Retaining Wealth in the Community: When money is spent at local businesses, a larger portion of that money tends to stay within the community. Local business owners often live in the same community where they operate, and they, in turn, spend money on local goods and services, creating a positive economic cycle.
  3. Economic Resilience: A diverse range of local businesses makes the economy more resilient to external shocks. If a city relies heavily on a few large corporations and one of them faces difficulties, it can have a severe impact. Supporting a variety of local businesses helps buffer the community from economic downturns.
  4. Community Character: Local businesses contribute to the unique character and identity of a community. They often offer products and services that reflect the local culture, history, and preferences, creating a distinct and vibrant community atmosphere.
  5. Entrepreneurship and Innovation: Supporting local businesses encourages entrepreneurship and innovation. Local entrepreneurs are more likely to experiment with new ideas, products, and services, contributing to economic growth and fostering a spirit of innovation within the community.
  6. Environmental Impact: Local businesses often have smaller carbon footprints compared to larger, national or international corporations. They may source products locally, reducing transportation-related emissions. Supporting local businesses aligns with sustainability goals, contributing to a healthier environment.
  7. Community Engagement: Local businesses are more likely to engage with the community through sponsorships, partnerships, and other collaborative efforts. This strengthens the social fabric of the community and fosters a sense of pride and ownership among residents.
  8. Quality of Life: A diverse array of local businesses contributes to a higher quality of life for residents. Having access to a variety of locally-owned shops, restaurants, and services enhances the overall well-being and satisfaction of the community.
  9. Tax Revenue: Local businesses contribute to the local tax base, providing funds for essential public services such as education, infrastructure, and public safety. This helps maintain and improve the overall quality of life in Thunder Bay.
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