Buy local this holiday season
by Kevin_Foley
 Buy Local
November 23, 2011 01:57 PM | 2098 views | 0 0 comments | 80 80 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Despite the many millions chain stores and restaurants spend on marketing and advertising along with their ubiquitous locations, there is still room for a local entrepreneur who commits himself or herself to doing something exceptionally well.
There is a local place we've found where the owners are all in and pride still matters. It's called Big Shanty Smokehouse on Cherokee Street in Kennesaw. Opened a few years ago by Chic Dillard, his wife Sissy and their daughter Shannon, my wife Susie and I happened to be among their first customers. We've watched this trio labor tirelessly to serve up some of the best barbecue you'll find in Atlanta and maybe even the state.
As the holidays approach and you consider spending your money, think about the businesses owned by your friends and neighbors first. Like the Dillard's establishment, many are worthy of your patronage and loyalty. 
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Kevin Foley is a 1979 graduate of the University of Connecticut and a former newspaper reporter. In 1981, he began his 30-year career in public relations, working in account management for Burson-Marsteller and Ketchum, two international PR firms. In 1986, he launched KEF Media in Chicago, a firm specializing in broadcast and Internet public relations. He moved the company to Atlanta in 1993. His career has taken him around the world and to every major city in America. Along the way he has worked with celebrities and public figures like Hank Aaron, Jane Seymour, Bob Dole, Nolan Ryan and Ryan Seacrest. Kevin went into semi-retirement in 2009 to pursue his long delayed writing career. In 2008 he published his first novel, "Where Law Ends," and has three other novels in various stages of completion. Kevin serves on the board of directors at Pinetree Country Club where enjoys golf and tennis. He and his wife Susie live in Kennesaw. The couple has two grown children.

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