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Sunday, November 27, 2016

Entrepreneurs talk shop during Small Business Saturday

By DEREK EDRY
Staff Writer

NASHUA - Cassy Zinzopoulos, of Snap! It's Vintage, was overjoyed to share the fruits of her family's labor during the city's Small Business Saturday event.

The store opened in July at 33 Main St., and its specialty is rare vintage items. While it's not the only store of its kind, it has a personality all its own. ...

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NASHUA - Cassy Zinzopoulos, of Snap! It's Vintage, was overjoyed to share the fruits of her family's labor during the city's Small Business Saturday event.

The store opened in July at 33 Main St., and its specialty is rare vintage items. While it's not the only store of its kind, it has a personality all its own.

Take, for instance, a Renaissance era steel chair with the busts of two draconian-looking men bookmarking each end of its back; or a 19th century train conductor's outfit, complete with the iconic blue cap - these are not your everyday vintage items.

"This is my mom's dream," Zinzopoulos said. "She's been collecting for 20 years."

Two years ago, when her family began the process revitalizing the space which the business now occupies, Zinzopoulos was going through a rough patch. So, she moved back home to Nashua to help make their dream a reality, and got her life back on track.

"This business saved my life," she said.

Zinzopoulos said her family goes above and beyond to find vintage items.

"They bought a dress off an Amish woman - normally they hand down their clothes - so they never get bought from anybody. But this lady found them so intriguing that she sold them a hat and a dress that was handmade that had gone down through three generations," she said.

SNAP! It's Vintage was just one of dozens of businesses in Greater Nashua celebrating Small Business Saturday, the locavore's counterpart to Black Friday.

At jajaBelles pastry and coffee shop, at 182 Main St., Jessica dePontbriand whipped up lattes for eager customers.

"Small businesses allow for you to get to know the people in your community and the ins and outs of their everyday lives - that's the beauty of small business," said dePontbriand.

She said that events like Small Business Day give small business owners a chance to pause and recognize their accomplishments.

"We're a small coffee shop and bakery, and we do every aspect. And a day like today is a very proud day, when we celebrate small business, because we work so hard and so fast that we don't have time to reflect on how far we've come."

At the League of NH Craftsmen Nashua Fine Craft Gallery, at 98 Main St., shoppers pored over handcrafted works by local talent.

Lisa Lewis, one of the store's managers, said she also appreciates that Small Business Saturday brings attention to local retailers.

"We're specifically supporting local artists, and helping them make a living doing what they love. I think that's really important," she said. "I love the idea of focusing on the economy of downtown Nashua itself, rather than a chain that's supporting manufacturing outside the country."

Over at 143 Main St., volunteers helped distribute a variety of "Shop Small"-themed goodies, including coupons and offerings from downtown businesses, and a Shop Small Snowball Passport, which gave participants a chance to win $300 worth of gift cards.

Derek Edry can be reached at 594-1243, dedry@nashuatelegraph.com or @Telegraph_Derek.