The Columbia metropolitan area spans around 30 miles, give or take, from the Northeast area to the good edges of Lexington county, and packed within those miles are dozens of excellent small businesses run by the people all around you. The past few years I’ve highlighted the importance of Small Business Saturday, even though it’s the invention of a major credit card company trying to get people to make more purchases. But if you do it right, those purchases can make a much higher impact in the community if you choose to buy locally, a message that I 100% support.

In the spirit of SBS, here are my top five favorite small businesses that do, in fact, span from NE to the Town of Lexington and all in between.

  1. 14 Carrot Whole Foods– I’ve talked a little bit about 14 Carrot before, but I’ll keep the love going here. I love them. I drive from Cayce at least a few times a month to get goods from there, from stocking my mason jars with items from their bulk selection ro my most recent (and weirdest) purchase from them- a SCOBY for brewing kombucha. Everyone who works there knows what they are doing and where everything in the store is, no matter how random or obscure it may be.
  2. Sun Spirit Yoga Wellness– so maybe I’m 100% biased here, but I love this studio. It’s close to home, and it’s got a vibe that I like. There’s never been a time during a class where I’ve felt self conscious, because that’s the kind of positive energy that the instructors exude. With class schedules expanding into more evening classes, I find myself there two to three times a week nearly every week, and crave it when I miss a class.
  3. Jack & Jane Sport– So maybe I can’t quite outfit my entire workout wardrobe with items from here, but what I do get from Jack & Jane is seriously good stuff. They helped me find a sports bra that works for everything from running to yoga, which is no easy feat. I’m hooked, and that’s not just a sports bra pun.
  4. Summit Cycles– though the super convenient-to-us West Columbia location has shuttered its doors, the same friendly people are still behind the handlebars at the Northeast location. They have taken the time to fix many blown spokes on Patrick’s tires, and when it warms back up, I’m sure he’ll be making the trek out there to get any others fixed. They also have a lot of bike accessories and got me to purchase a helmet.
  5. Vino Garage– I hadn’t been to VG until just the other week for a Girls Pint Out event, but now that I’ve seen what they’ve got going on there on North Main, I’m definitely going back there. Doug has the walls lined with wines and beers, and you can buy the brews singularly if you’re not up to committing to a whole six pack. I’ve got a lot more exploring to do here, and you should too.

What are your favorite small businesses?