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Support local . . . Representing some of the 48 businesses involved in this year's Shoptober campaign are (from left) Jeremy Holding (Soul Surf & Skate), Helen Conn (Enhance), Karen Lord (Camerons), Sara Quinn and Charlotte Kingan (The Brydone Hotel), Lisa Johnston (Paper Plus), Cristy Holding (Soul Surf & Skate), Dawn Brown (Presence on Harbour) and Alex Regtien (The Business Hive). PHOTO: REBECCA RYAN

Locals and out-of-towners are being encouraged to shop till they drop in Oamaru this month, as Shoptober returns bigger and better.

The launch is tomorrow, and 48 business owners are “pulling together to make it the ultimate shopping day”, Oamaru Business Collective chairwoman Annabel Berry said.

From noon to 4pm, there will be live music in the street with Dee May and the Saints, activities for the children at Rebellious Rose, face painting at Design Federation and a sausage sizzle outside Soul Surf & Skate, among other things. The Brydone Hotel is running meal specials and Presence on Harbour is offering a free gift with any purchase over $50.

Teachers would be celebrated on Monday, which is World Teachers’ Day, Mrs Berry said.

“We are encouraging everyone to come to town, engage with all our businesses and stick to local,” Mrs Berry said.

Shoptober was first held last year. It was a key element of the Oamaru Business Collective’s wider plan to get consumers to buy from businesses in Oamaru – instead of going online or travelling to larger centres.

The best thing about the shop local campaign was all the local businesses working together, Mrs Berry said. There were now 300 members of the collective.

“Coming out of Covid, it’s created a really great collaborative environment for us all.”

The focus now was to get more people from out of town, and encourage domestic tourism.