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Support Local, Black-Owned Businesses This Holiday Season

By: Break The Ice Media

The Cayuga County community continues to live out the legacy of our historic resident, Harriet Tubman, through a variety of businesses, shops, and services in the area. In addition to her bravery, Tubman was a highly successful entrepreneur and businesswoman in her time. She augmented her low income during the Civil War by opening her own restaurant in South Carolina, where she sold sodas and baked goods to soldiers. In her chosen home of Cayuga County, she made her own money by selling the pigs, vegetables, apples, pears, and peaches that she tended to on her own farm, and even bartered with her neighbors for other goods that she needed along the way.

Today, residents are maintaining the entrepreneurial spirit of Tubman by running their own restaurants, selling art and products and offering a variety of services. This holiday season, shop local by patronizing the Black-owned shops in Cayuga County that are living in Harriet Tubman’s legacy.  


Lavish Lounge

If you’re looking to give the gift of delicious cuisine, relaxation, and entertainment this holiday season, stop into Lavish Lounge to grab your loved ones a gift certificate. The trendy venue with a laid-back atmosphere offers authentic Jamaican and American food, happy hour every day, and rotating events like trivia, karaoke, and DJs. The owner, Marcia Myers, says she was inspired to start the business by her grandfather who was a master chef in England. She learned to cook from a young age and wanted to bring a “touch of the island vibes” from Jamaica to the small city of Auburn!



Arthur the Artist

Arthur Hutchinson was born and raised in Auburn by his Jamaican parents. After moving away to pursue a career in architecture, he ultimately returned to his hometown to follow his dream of becoming a full-time artist. Today, Arthur has his own business, where he can thrive in his “freedom, independence, and creative control.” If you have an art lover in your life, visit Arthur’s Website to check out his work and shop local this holiday season!

Essentially Erica

Erica Manners of Essentially Erica is a local artist, blogger, and photographer in the City of Auburn. For Erica, photography started out as a hobby, but quickly became a full-fledged business after she decided to go all in. Erica says that what makes owning a small business in Auburn so special is that there is “so much history to learn about and cherish here that makes you truly appreciate every step of how you get from point A to point B.” If you want to give the gift of timeless photos this holiday season, look no further than Essentially Erica.

Hair & Beauty

Nate’s Barber Shop

There is nothing like going into the new year with a new look. Nate’s Barber Shop can help you gift that to someone while supporting a local business! Nate has been cutting hair since he was young, but when opening his own place, he wanted it to be something more than that. He envisioned an “uplifting atmosphere” where he can connect with customers and form a valuable relationship with each of them.

Barbara Jeans Hair and Body Products

Barbara Jeans Hair and Body Products offers body butters, hair creams, and even crafts to gift to your loved ones this holiday season! The owner, Jasmine, was driven to start her business while on a mission to find a natural solution for her daughter’s eczema. She is inspired to make her customers feel beautiful in their own skin and wanted to carry products that were not only natural, but inclusive in that anyone can use them. Be sure to stop by to pick up some goodies while doing your holiday shopping this year!

T3 Beauty Supply

T3 Beauty Supply has quickly become the go-to stop for the needs of minority women in Auburn, and that is what drove the owner to start her business. Until recently, there was nowhere for women of color to get the beauty supplies they need without taking a drive. Now, with their newly opened storefront on State Street in Auburn, T3 Beauty Supply caters to all their customers’ needs, and all your needs this holiday season!

Divine Coverings

Divine Coverings offeris a wide variety of quality products like baby gifts, drinkware, and beauty and fashion supplies. As an entrepreneur from a young age, Melody Smith Johnson knew she wanted a place where women could feel empowered and beautiful, and that’s exactly what she did. Divine Coverings has several gift options for the women in your life this holiday season, and if you just can’t choose, gift cards are always available!


Sister’s Cleaning Service

This year, you can give someone you care about the gift of a cleaning service, so they can enjoy a fresh start after the holidays! The owner of Sister’s Cleaning Services decided she wanted to start her own trustworthy business after stepping in to help other landlords clean their homes in order to flip them quicker. She also offers organization, whether on a daily or weekly basis.