Recommended Local Businesses
Jo Landers believes in working with local businesses whenever practicable. Local businesses employ local people who spend their paychecks at other local businesses, helping stabilize the economy of the Pioneer Valley.
Please CALL any vendor before visiting them to confirm the hours I've listed are still current.
Office and Business Supplies
- Sunraise Printing - Hadley, Massachusetts
All-purpose printing, screen printing and sign making business. Checks, self-inking stamps and other bookkeeping supplies, letterhead and envelopes, NCR forms, short-run digital color, four color process printing, signs, banners, window and vehicle lettering, silk screened t-shirts, caps and tote bags, custom-imprinted coffee mugs, pens, letter openers, key rings and other promotional materials. Route 9 in Hadley (opposite Whole Foods). Open Mon-Fri 8:30-4:30 and Saturday mornings. Telephone: 413.586.7133.
- Easthampton Savings Bank
Easthampton Savings Bank offers a personal checking account that pays the same interest as the big bank's money market accounts, without any minimum balance requirements or monthly fees. On the business side, they have interest bearing small business accounts with only a $300 minimum, a $6.00 per month fee, and no per-check or per-item fees, as well as the standard 'sweep account' for medium sized businesses. They lend locally, so your money gets put to use in the community, and they support many local events and organizations. Branches in Easthampton, Southampton, Northampton, Hadley, Belchertown, and Westfield.
- Florence Savings Bank
If you use a debit card a lot, you can't beat the personal rewards checking account from Florence Savings Bank. It pays CD-level interest, refunds debit card fees, and doesn't have a minimum balance. You do need to have at least one direct deposit or automatic withdrawal, accept e-statements instead of paper ones, and use your debit card at least 12 times a month. On the business side, they offer a free checking account for customers who write less than 250 checks/month, with no minimum balance required, and are an approved SBA lender. Another local lender and good community member, each year they give away $50,000 to local nonprofits, based on customer votes. Branches in Florence, Northampton, Hadley, Willamsburg, Easthampton, Amherst, Belchertown and Granby.
Gifts and Goodies
- Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce - Northampton, Massachusetts
Need a gift for someone but you're not sure what to get? Keep your friends away from the mall and promote local businesses with a Northampton Gift Card, which can be used at over 50 local restaurants and stores. Order online or purchase at the Chamber offices. 99 Pleasant St. Open Mon-Fri 9:00-5:00, Additional hours Sat 12:00-4:00, May-Oct only. Telephone: 413.584.1900.
- WHMP - the Pioneer Valley's News Radio - Northampton, Massachusetts
Save 30 Store - save 30% dining out and on stuff you were going to buy anyway.
WHMP offers $10 gift certificates to many area businesses at a 30% discount. Buy as many as you want online and pick them up a few days later at the office in Northampton or have them mailed to you for an additional charge.
- Smith College Museum of Art
The Smith College Museum of Art has an internationally known collection, plus the bathrooms have won awards! The second Friday of every month is free from 4-8pm. Elm Street (Route 9), Northampton, MA.
Informal Client Meetings
- Cafe Evolution - Florence, MA
Featuring good coffee and a reasonably priced breakfast and lunch menu, Cafe Evolution also has tables big enough to set a laptop on and spread out some paperwork for an informal meeting with 2-4 people. If you don’t go during the breakfast or lunch rush, they don’t mind you camping out an hour or longer. Though their website doesn’t say it, the last time I was there I had no problem getting an internet connection. Unlike downtown Northampton, parking is usually not an issue. Open Monday-Thursday 7:30-4, Friday 7:30-9pm, Sat 9am-10pm, Sunday 10am-2pm. Chestnut Street, Florence.
Not So Local Really Good Deals
Checks for Less / EI Printing - Portland, MEI've been ordering
Quickbooks computer checks,
one-write manual check systems, and bookkeeping supplies(computer and manual deposit slips, self-inking stamps, window envelopes, etc.) from these people since 1998. Their online ordering system is clear and easy to use and their customer service has been great.
Prices are at least 20% lowerthan ordering through your bank, NEBS, Intuit or another supplier and they guarantee the lowest prices for computer checks.
One of the few online places that will also cheerfully accept your order by phone or mail as well as through their website, and email you a proof if you use custom artwork on your checks. They're in Portland, ME, so shipping to Massachusetts is usually just a few days; unless you're really in a hurry there's no need to pay rush charges or expedited shipping.