View our latest e-newsletter that highlight’s Betsy’s Sunflower, the Kitchen Store & More! Plus new additions to the ShopApalachicola.com site where you can purchase e-gift certificates from participating downtown businesses. Thanks for reading!
Emily Raffield is the designer of BECASA clothing and accessory line that’s featured in her brick and mortar shop at 115 Commerce Street in Apalachicola’s historic downtown. Growing up in nearby Port St. Joe, Emily has always appreciated the community and generational love for place and people that’s found along our special coastline.
“I’ve always felt the pull of home wherever I’ve been. Our area’s natural beauty answers so many questions in my life and has given me guidance through the years. If I’m home, what can’t I do? The feeling of home is something people search for and sometimes never find. When you find what feels like home, it’s magic. That’s when your soul can rest,” Emily says.
Relocating to Apalachicola from Atlanta last summer, Emily and her husband, Rene, have found that undeniable feeling of home here in Apalach– and with that peaceful phenomena at play, Emily uses it to create and design BECASA’s classic linen clothing and much more, all for our coastal lifestyle. When Emily’s not designing a new collection, meeting with her manufacturer in South Georgia, or working on the business — she’s nurturing BECASA as a communal space for local women to shop, connect and feel cared for in our community.
“I want BECASA to be a haven, of sorts, for all of us. I hope locals and visitors alike feel comfortable to stop by anytime — to shop, get style advice, or sit on our couch for a bit and chat. It’s something we can give back, as I’ve been held up and cheered on by so many in our community — from Jan Thomas and the Girl’s Night Out group, to many of my clients who’ve become family, Apalachicola Main Street, my merchant friends – Marilyn Brogan of Marilyn Brogan Jewelry, Debbie at The Shop, Michelle Seawright of Riverside Mercantile and Beverly at The Grill, to name a few — all have given me a support group to call on as I face the daily adventures of owning a small business,” says Emily.
BECASA’s offerings range from high quality clothing, shoes, beauty products, home goods and gift items. Candles, fragrance, art and some furniture. You can connect online with BECASA – www.shopbecasa.com and on social media, @BECASA.
ShopApalachicola.com is a new an online marketplace where you can buy e-gift certificates from participating downtown restaurants and retailers, all from the comfort of home! Now more than ever, the Downtown Apalachicola businesses you love need your support. Please help us support small businesses by purchasing a gift certificate today. Buy one for yourself and send one as a gift! It’s quick and easy, and you’ll receive the e-gift certificate via email in an instant. https://www.downtownapalachicola.com/shop-apalachicola/
To assist industry professionals whose employment has been negatively impacted by COVID-19, Florida Atlantic University (FAU) is now offering its Hospitality and Tourism Management online certification program free of charge. This is a 15 hour online course. To learn more or register, click here. Registration deadline: April 7, 2020
ShopApalachicola.com is a unique online shopping experience where you can buy gift certificates from some of your favorite retailers and restaurants in historic Downtown Apalachicola, the Heart of the Forgotten Coast. Purchase one to treat yourself or send one as a gift. The electronic gift certificate will be received via email instantly.
Supporting Local Businesses
Now more than ever, the Downtown Apalachicola businesses you love need your support. The COVID-19 virus is presenting an unprecedented challenge. Tourism has slowed, people are practicing social distancing, and to help stop the spread of coronavirus, Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order mandating that all Florida restaurants must move to take-out or delivery service only.
There’s a lot to love about our local businesses. They employ local people, they are the foundation of our economy, and they’re invested in our community. They’re our friends and neighbors. They’re the sponsors of local events, charitable causes, and kids’ sports teams. They volunteer their time. They make Downtown Apalachicola the vibrant heart of our community. Now it’s our turn to show our support.
One of the easiest ways to keep cash flowing to local businesses during this downturn is to purchase gift certificates to be used later. However, most downtown businesses don’t currently offer e-gift certificates on their own.
Apalachicola Main Street’s concept to fill the gap is ShopApalachicola.com, a page where shoppers can purchase gift certificates online from participating businesses. “With the devastating impact to our economy, we wanted to offer a new way to support local entrepreneurs,” said Mark Milliken, Apalachicola Main Street board member, “Now whether you live across town or across the country you can help sustain local business by shopping from home.”
Keeping Customers Engaged
Apalachicola may be a town of less than 2,500 residents, but we have fans far and wide. Many of the business community’s customers don’t live here–they are visitors from other states, snowbirds, part-year residents, weekenders, or day trippers. A look at license plates on any given normal day downtown tells you how geographically diverse the customer base is.
“This is a way for downtown businesses to continue making sales while people are practicing social distancing,” said Main Street’s Executive Director Augusta West, “and it’s also a way for customers to show their support and commitment so that together we can get through this.”
Visit ShopApalachicola.com to view the participating businesses. Click on the “Buy Now” button under your business of choice and choose from the $25 level on up. You can purchase one for yourself or send one via email as a gift.
When a purchase is made, the digital gift certificate is delivered to your inbox immediately. The business owner also receives instant email notification of the transaction. Each gift certificate has a unique number which can be used to track certificate redemption.
If your favorite place to shop is not represented, let us know. We will contact them personally and let them know that their participation is missed. This initiative is brand new. In a desire to help local businesses right away, we went from concept to launch in one week. More businesses will be added soon, so please check back often!
Sign Up to Participate
ShopApalachicola.com is an economic vitality initiative of Apalachicola Main Street, and all are welcome. There is no cost for businesses in the Main Street district to participate, and all are welcome. In order to provide this free service, a small processing fee is passed along to the customer to cover associated costs such as credit card processing. For more information, please email [email protected] or call 844-272-2523. More businesses will be added soon, and we’d love to hear from you!