Scott and Bernadette West

For Those Who Visit Knoxville or Live and Work in Downtown Knoxville:


Support local food

local music

local culture

local history

and local businesses!

National chains were not and are not the pioneers of downtown revitalization, nor are they the catalysts of Downtown Knoxville’s growth.

National chains are drawn to communities like Scruffy City, not by love and a sense of community, but by the scent of profit in the pheromones of our demographics. It is not their desire to take a massive risk in a foreign community; it is their desire to ensure growing profit for their massive companies with as little risk as is possible through the creative financing of our local citizenry’s backs.

National chains are drawn to the energy created by local businesses and the foot traffic those long-striving folks have driven Downtown. In truth, it is the local entrepreneurs who were and are the key to Downtown Knoxville’s character and future.

Local businesses will stay when times are bad and will give back twice as much to their community when times are good.

Why make the effort to buy from an independent, locally-owned business, rather than a nationally owned business?

Local retailers and restaurants return 52-79% of their revenue to the local economy, compared to just 14%-37% for chains… Also, the same amount of money spent in a local business generates TWICE as many local jobs as a chain…

This is because the local stores and restaurants purchase many goods and services from other local businesses, while national chains do not. In addition, local businesses have their offices in the area in which they do business, while national chains do not.

In other words, supporting local businesses actually puts many more millions of dollars into our local governmental budgets, business tills, and workers’ hands than does give multimillion-dollar handouts to multimillion-dollar national chains…

Of course, our point is not to say that none of us should ever spend a buffalo nickel in a national chain business.

Nor is it to say we shouldn’t travel and experience this wild, wonderful world in all its colorful glory (and for that matter, it always feels great to pay a creative artisan to support her amazing endeavors).

We’re certainly not condemning anyone for spending their hard-earned dollars however they see fit.

What we’re doing is simple: we’re encouraging ourselves and a few of our friends and neighbors to support local food, music, culture, history and businesses whenever possible.

Keep Knoxville Scruffy!

Bernadette and Scott West