Last updated: August 23. 2013 12:30PM - 44 Views

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This letter is regarding Kiarash Zarezadeh's June 7 column (“Stand up for local, original eateries”). Bashing local businesses for not being independent companies isn't a good argument for avoiding these places. Zarezadeh's corporate disgust includes: Papa Johns, Pizza Hut, Domino's and Biggby Coffee. Taste, quality and friendliness are what motivate patronization. Local or not is neither here nor there. I would pit Biggby Coffee's beverages up against anyone's, any day. If you want to go to a local hangout for coffee with limited hours of operation and unfamilliar quality, you go ahead. I'll stick to my premium Biggby. (Biggby Coffee will see you in The Lima News Best of The Region contest.) Zarezadeh implies that corporate franchises don't have much impact in the community and that little of their money stays local. He is quite mistaken. Local residents are employed at these businesses, and many of these franchise owners are Lima natives. Also, Domino's, Papa Johns and Pizza Hut donate pizza and more to schools and local charities. Many independent business owners don't have the resources or inclination to volunteer time and absorb the cost of the constant flood of donation requests by the community. Biggby supports local artists/authors and donates coffee, time and gift baskets to schools, the senior community and local fundraisers. I am never against independent businesses, but I wouldn't place all merit on local ownership nor would I dare to scold a great business for being born a chain or a franchise. No matter the origin of a business, many owners proudly choose community involvement rather than hiding behind a badge that says, “Don't hassle me, I'm local.”

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