DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Some Oregon District businesses were off to a slower start on Small Business Saturday, where others saw pre-pandemic level business. All the businesses said Small Business Saturday is one of the most important days of the year.

“Today is typically our busiest day of the year,” Heart Mercantile Social Media Manager Tailor Curtis said.

Even nearing the end of the business day, customers were still stopping in to shop at Heart Mercantile.

“The bigger shops have the same stuff, you know, every store you go to or the little ones are a little more individualized,” customer Tiffany Trivett said. “It’s just nice supporting those businesses so we can keep them around and grow downtown.”

For Heart Mercantile, this year’s Small Business Saturday is picking up from the pandemic slow down.

“It has definitely been slower since the pandemic, but we’re rising back up, this year was pretty good,” Curtis said.

Some businesses in the Oregon District told 2 NEWS Saturday was slower than expected. They said a day after Dayton’s holiday parade turned into chaos after police say a shot was fired, it may have kept some customers home.

Other Oregon District businesses are celebrating a successful Small Business Saturday.

“We did better than we did last year, yesterday on Black Friday as well,” Omega Music Shift Leader Jack Parrappa said.

Parrappa said Omega Music saw a lot of new customers through their doors.

“With Small Business Saturday, I’d say we get a lot of newer faces that sign up for the reward program and then become regulars,” Parrappa said.

For these Dayton businesses, Saturday kicks off the busiest time of the year.

“It is so important to shop small because, I think, it’s two thirds of that money stays in your community,” Curtis said. “It keeps your neighbors and business, it keeps them having jobs, and it’s just important.”

Now the next big business day is Cyber Monday, and while you’re shopping for your online deals, many small businesses also operate online shops.