ST. CLOUD – A pair of St. Cloud companies have created a public awareness campaign encouraging residents to shop locally during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ‘Keep the Lights On’ campaign was launched in mid-December by WhiteBox Marketing and Anderson Hughs Productions. The campaign features a website, a short video starring local business owners, and a collection of marketing materials highlighting locally-owned businesses.

“As a small community business owner, this is really important to us,” said Carrie Karki, president of WhiteBox Marketing. “We’re passionate about trying to keep our small businesses alive. With everything that’s been going on this year, it’s been difficult for us all.”

Karki says the goal is to encourage St. Cloud residents to spend their money locally by highlighting the wide range of small businesses in St. Cloud.

“The restaurant industry, especially the locally-owned businesses, are really struggling,” Karki said. “And beyond the restaurant community, all small businesses have been affected by COVID and the closures. We’re really just trying to rally people.”

Karki says the campaign will be underway for an indefinite period of time, and they hope to see it become a community-wide effort.

“It’s a personal and professional passion of ours to see our home community thrive and grow" Karki said. "As small business owners ourselves, we wanted to help other small businesses with a positive message. We can all support each other.”

To learn more, visit the Keep the Lights On website.

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