Our Live Local Market place will launch in mid-October, giving Spokanites a one-stop shop for the best local businesses. From now until Oct. 15, we’re offering free business consulting and webinars to help our local businesses through COVID-19. Click the image below to register your business and sign up for newsletter updates.

A Special THANK YOU to the Spokane City Council for Funding Live Local!

By funding the public launch of Live Local INW with City of Spokane CARES Act dollars, we will have a fighting chance as an independent business community to get through this COVID crisis together – and come out stronger on the other side!
We will:
  • Launch a low-barrier online marketplace to provide e-commerce access to local businesses who have experienced a reduction in foot traffic due to the pandemic;
  • Encourage consumers to discover local goods and services that can be bought safely and conveniently in our market;
  • Re-circulate hundreds of thousands of dollars in our local economy, funneling resources to local businesses;
  • Feature local member businesses at no cost to them in campaign media spots;
  • Support the essential work that our neighborhood business districts do in creating centers of vital local commerce;
  • Create the “buy local” directory that consumers are demanding right now;
  • Provide free support and business consulting to businesses to both fully participate in the campaign and address unique business needs resulting from coronavirus market challenges; and
  • Build community and local business collective power!

Join us in thanking the Spokane City Council by sending a message to: citycouncil2@spokanecity.org

Stay tuned for more info! 


Why Live Local in the INW?

By choosing local and independent businesses for your services, shopping, dining and other needs, you not only enjoy a more distinctive and personal experience, you’re helping:

The casual encounters you enjoy at neighborhood–scale businesses and the public spaces around them build relationships and community cohesiveness. They’re the ultimate social networking sites!

Each dollar you spend at independent businesses returns 3 times more money to your local economy than one spent at a chain (almost 50 times more than buying from an online mega-retailer) — a benefit we all can bank on.

Independent businesses help give your community its distinct personality.

Local stores enable you to try on and try out items before you buy — and get real expertise — saving your time and money. 

Independent, community-serving businesses are people-sized. They typically consume less land, carry more locally-made products, locate closer to residents and create less traffic and air pollution. 

More efficient land use and more central locations mean local businesses put less demand on our roads, sewers, and safety services. They also generate more tax revenue per sales dollar. The bottom line: a greater percentage of local independent businesses keeps your taxes lower. 

Reader surveys by the Consumers Union repeatedly show independent businesses beating their chain competitors in overall customer satisfaction (and often save you money).

Click to visit our campaign Facebook page.

A wide variety of independent businesses, each serving their customers’ tastes, creates greater overall choice for all of us.

The multiplier effect created by spending locally generates lasting impact on the prosperity of local organizations and residents. 

Not only do independent businesses employ more people directly per dollar of revenue, they also are the customers of local printers, accountants, wholesalers, farms, attorneys, etc., expanding opportunities for local entrepreneurs.

Small businesses donate more than twice as much per sales dollar to local non-profits, events, and teams compared to big businesses. 

Local ownership of business means residents with roots in the community are involved in key development decisions that shape our lives and local environment.

Research shows a strong correlation between the percentage of small locally-owned firms and various indicators of personal and community health and vitality. 


The Institute for Local Self Reliance: Why Local Matters

Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation: For Entrepreneurs to Thrive, Policies Must Help Level The Playing Field

Beacon Economics Report: The Economic Impact of Buying Local

Michigan State University: An Assessment of the Economic Advantages of Shopping at Locally Owned Businesses



Meet Our Live Local Organizational Partners

Janice Miller Krummel

Janice Miller Krummel is the Executive Director of the Inland Northwest Business Alliance, Owner of PlantBased in Washington – a Vegan cooking blog, cookbook, and small bite-catering company, Co-Owner of Krummill, LLC a local consulting company. She is currently on the Spokane Office of Civil Rights Task Force, event and fundraising committees for Spokane Fantasy Flight, Spokane Pride, and the Washington State LGBTQ+ Legislative Caucus. Janice grew up on the outskirts of Bovill, Idaho in Latah county. It is a community of nothing but small, locally-owned businesses, made strong by the people who live there. The community is proof that when you support each other and genuinely care about each other, that is the foundation of what keeps a community strong. She came to Spokane as a stop on her way to something different, a lay-over. However, when Janice met her spouse, they both chose to make West Central their home. Her favorite vegetable? All of them!

Melissa Huggins

Melissa Huggins is the Executive Director of Spokane Arts.  A graduate of Eastern Washington University’s MFA program and Pacific Lutheran University, Melissa has spent over a decade marketing and promoting authors and artists, and consulting on topics that include book promotion, media training, artist statements, and more. She is a prose writer, with articles appearing in Lilac City Fairy Tales, Railtown Almanac, the Oyez Review, and elsewhere. Her author interviews with Joyce Carol Oates, William T. Vollmann, and Emily St. John Mandel have appeared in Willow Springs. She headed the Get Lit! programs at Eastern Washington University for five years, which included organizing K-12 creative writing outreach initiatives and the annual Get Lit! Book Festival. In addition to her nonprofit work, she is a freelance copy editor and proofreader. Melissa is an avid sports fan and tweets regularly under the handle @MHuggins99.



Julie Shepard-Hall

Julie Sheppard Hall is the President of the Garland Business District, President of the Eastern Washington Association of Health Underwriters, a North Hill Neighborhood Council Board member and business owner of Integrity Insurance Solutions & ZipperZ Inc. When she gets some free time, she loves to kayak the Spokane River. Julie moved to Spokane in early childhood and has been proud to call Spokane her home since early childhood. As so many Spokanites do, she left Spokane to tend to other life situations and goals but came back permanently. She appreciates the size of our city, the ease of connecting with friends, and the wonderful things to experience in the Inland Northwest, such as beautiful parks, rivers and lakes. Her favorite vegetables are potatoes.



Megan Kennedy

Megan Kennedy founded Rogue Heart Media in 2011, operating the studio on North Monroe for the last four years, and is currently cultivating a growing team of values-driven nonfiction storytellers and actively pursuing a B Corp Certification. She loves the Spokane regional community, and enjoys serving when and where she can, from a neighborhood level with the North Monroe Business District and Emerson Garfield Farmers’ Market, to serving on the WQTIF committee for City of Spokane, and member groups like SIMBA and the local chapter of Executive Women International. Volunteering and serving with her nonprofit partners is a joy as well. She has two young kids that keep her busy. She loves to hike, camp, and canoe on family adventures, when she isn’t gardening, filming, or making photographs together. Megan came to Spokane right after graduating from WSU in 2005, and has been deepening her roots ever since. She loves our beautiful river, surrounding mountains, and our farm country. Exploration and enjoyment of the outdoors is always top pick for her and her family. Megan loves veggie medleys… variety is the spice of life. But for favorites, give her some brussels sprouts, garlic, and sweet potatoes to roast up and she is a happy camper.