Oakland encourages local shopping


City leaders are asking residents to support local merchants by taking part in two holiday shopping events Friday.

"Keep Downtown in the Black" will be centered in downtown Oakland, at 14th Street and Broadway, and will continue along Broadway to Jack London Square.

Downtown shoppers will be treated to performances by local DJs and musicians as they support local merchants.

Shoppers will also be able to purchase raffle tickets to win one of two $50 gift cards at participating stores.

"Plaid Friday", an idea conceived by two Oakland art gallery and shop owners that has become a nationwide trend, celebrates the diversity and creativity of independent businesses.

Participating stores will offer refreshments, music and special offers.

A list of participating stores can be found at PlaidFriday.com.

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