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BUZZ MAGAZINE - February 1 kicked off the first day of the second-annual 'Love Illinois Local' campaign to highlight the need for the continued support of local independent businesses across the state.

With 200-plus businesses and causes involved, the statewide membership encourages the public to shop locally during the tough months for small businesses.

“Now is the time that local independent businesses can suffer,” said Illinois Local co-founder Gemma Long.

“So, last year, we launched the first Love Illinois Local campaign, which runs February 1-14 and features a member and their business every day in an effort to remind communities to support local.”

This year, members featured include, Smart Owl Coffee, Bailey Family Insurance, Jewelry by Rachel Lauer Thomas, FindingFlowerChild, Little Lincoln’s Toy Store,

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Lillian Geneva Boutique, The Strawberry Finch, Bobby Shaw Building and Remodeling, Luminary Counseling and Solutions, Rose Aesthetic & Wellness Clinic, The Hive on Maple Street Garden, Sangamon Reclaimed, Peace, Love & Sweat, and the Illinois SBDC for Central Illinois.

Shaun and Bobby Shaw (son and father) of Bobby Shaw Building and Remodeling.

Rachel Lauer Thomas of Rachel Lauer Thomas Jewelry.

The campaign will be featured on the Illinois Local website and social media platforms.

“One of the easiest ways to support local businesses is to help create awareness of their products and services. This can be done through sharing social media content, liking, and commenting on posts, and providing positive reviews,” said Illinois Local co-founder Chris Long.

Illinois Local covers the cost of the photos, shares the content, and provides these images to members for marketing on their website, print materials, and social channels.

"It takes just a few minutes to make a positive impact on a local business. We hope the campaign will help highlight just some of our amazing members across Illinois."

For information about Illinois Local, visit or email info@illinois You can also visit the Facebook page and @illinois_local on Instagram.

This story originally ran in the February 2023 issue of The Prairie Land Buzz Magazine.

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