two women standing
Dextina Booker and Stella Safari of Zapenda, an African-inspired apparel brand located in the Downtown Detroit Markets. Zapenda offers made-to-order fashions by tailors in the Democratic Republic of Congo using African wax fabrics. (Courtesy photo)

Shopping locally supports the economy, attracts businesses and helps grow opportunity within the city. It can also expand the tax base by sending more money to schools, police and fire. 

“Small businesses are the most underrated drivers of our economy,” said Charity Dean, CEO of the Metro Detroit Black Business Alliance, who is encouraging residents to shop in their community this season. “They hire 50% of our workforce and contribute significantly to commercial corridors. Shopping locally is one way to give small businesses, and our region, the boost it needs to thrive.”

Here’s a guide to supporting local entrepreneurs and organizations this holiday season. 

Shopping Detroit’s neighborhoods

The Detroit Economic Growth Corp. compiled a list of Detroit retailers. If you are looking to support neighborhood boutiques on the east or west side of Detroit for shopping options, DEGC’s Detroit Means Business is a good place to start.

Gifting an experience

The Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre is having a Black Friday sale. Jazzy Night ticket sales for the 2023 season open today and will continue on Small Business Saturday. The Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre is offering a 10 percent discount for season tickets. Shows begin June 7, 2023 and include appearances by Patrice Rushen, Kelly Price and more. 

Jazz musician Patrice Rushen is one of many artists scheduled to appear at the Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre in 2023. Discounted season tickets are available for Black Friday. (Courtesy photo)

Individual tickets range from $20 to $70. Season tickets are from  $420 to $784  The Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre box office will be open from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday. Black Friday tickets also will be available online and via Ticketmaster starting at noon.

Midtown offers its first Makers Market

Retailers in Midtown have come together to offer their first Makers Market highlighting local artists and vendors.

Shinola Detroit will feature vendors and makers including: Mesh Detroit, SMPLFD, Dos Jefes Garments, Ilera Apothecary, Dabls African Beads and Atelier Detroit. For refreshments, Two James cocktails and local food trucks will be on site. 

Custom wrapping paper by Detroit-based artists including Mike Han, Tony Whlgn, India Solomon and Martyna Alexander is also available.

Dabls Mbad African Bead Museum, usually found at 6559 Grand River Ave, will have a booth at the Midtown Market. (Dabls photo)

Canfield retailers include Bon Bon Bon, City Bird, Motor City Brewing Works, Nest Housewares, Nora Detroit, Mongers Food Wares, The Mushroom Hub, RUNDetroit, Shinola Detroit, Source Book Sellers, Third Man Records and Flo Boutique.

The market at the Shinola Home Store, 441 W Canfield, will be open today and every Saturday through Dec. 17. The hours are 10 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Give a membership

The Detroit People’s Food Co-op will be a full-service grocery store in the city’s North End owned by the community. After more than a decade of planning, Black leaders and community members broke ground earlier this year on the Co-op and Detroit Food Commons, a Black-led community development complex on Woodward Avenue. 

The Detroit People’s Food Co-op and its membership will expand access to healthy foods for city residents. Members will pay a one-time fee of $200 and be able to vote in board elections, share of future profits and support cooperative economics in Detroit. 

Malik Yakini, executive director and co-founder of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network takes part in an April groundbreaking for the Detroit People’s Food Co-op, part of the $21.3 million Detroit Food Commons project in the city’s North End. (Courtesy of Khary Frazier)

A west side celebration 

The Livernois community is celebrating its third annual Holiday Festival on Livernois Avenue of Fashion and Black Leaders Detroit is helping. Black Leaders Detroit is an organization that supports Black-led businesses across the city and will give out $50 gift cards to select stores while supplies last. 

Event check-in begins at 11 a.m. and will end at 4 p.m. at 19472 Livernois. 

Downtown Detroit Market and Cadillac Lodge

The Downtown Detroit markets feature 18 local entrepreneurs and small businesses. (Bedrock Detroit photo)


Eighteen local businesses, the majority of which are BIPOC or female-owned, will offer additional local holiday shopping options at the Downtown Detroit Markets. In its fifth year, the markets have offered a launchpad to more than 130 entrepreneurs and small businesses, generating nearly $6 million in overall sales, according to popup organizer Rocket Community Fund.

Retailers include: 3 Dogs and 1 Cat, Alcott’s Attic, Cookette, Dcreated Boutique, Estella’s Vegan Dessert Boutique, Flamingo Vintage, Halie & Co., Inkcourage, Janna Kay, Love Travels Imports, Mongers’ Provisions, Not Sorry Goods, Opal Grove Games, Quétarshé Textiles Design Studio, Well Done Goods, Whimsy & Wine, Young Socialites Clothier and Zapenda.

Cadillac Square is located at 662 Woodward Avenue and hours for the markets are 11 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.

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