BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — The day after Black Friday is not just your average Saturday, It is a chance for people to go out and shop local at the beginning of the holiday season. The Beckley Art Center held its opening day of the holiday gift shop on November 27, 2021 to kick off the holiday shopping season.

“We just get as many Appalachian artists as we can into a room at lower, more accessible gift-like prices. So we are just celebrating the holidays and the gift-giving season with the gift of art,” Saja Montague, Administrative Coordinator for the Beckley Art Center, said.

Montague said this is one of the larger gift shops with work from over 70 artists across the Appalachian region. She added it is more important than ever to support local artists and small businesses after the lack of selling and creative opportunities available during the pandemic.

“It really makes people think about how many small businesses and small creators that have been really struggling over the last two years,” Montague said. “So it is really important now more than ever to support small businesses and put money back into our communities.”

Montague said supporting local businesses and artists gives people the chance to find something unique for the perfect holiday gift.

“I think art is just very important because it tells a story and you can look at a piece of art that you’ve never seen before and really feel something about it,” Montague said. “So I think giving the gift of art is very important, it is very intimate and it is exciting.”

If you have not had the chance to find that perfect holiday gift yet, the gift shop will be open Tuesday through Saturday until December 18, 2021.