‘Shop for a Cause’ back for the holidays in Portland

So we’ve been through ‘Black Friday,’ then ‘Small Business Saturday,’ and now we’re on ‘Cyber Monday.’ Downtown Portland retailers hope you haven’t finished your holiday shopping just yet, though.

On Saturday, more than 40 Portland shops are taking part in their annual “Shop for a Cause” rally, during which participating businesses pledge to donate portions of their sales that day to two selected charities: The Center for Grieving Children and the Portland Police Department’s Explorer program.

So if you want to make your seasonal donations while at the same time crossing the last items off your Christmas lists, Dec. 3 is the date to save. Or if you skipped all of the previously mentioned shopping “holidays” and have all of your gifts yet to buy, even better.

Here’s a list of the stores taking part:

  • 604 Thrift
  • Central Yarn Shop
  • Coffee by Design
  • Condom Sense Boutiques
  • Country Noel
  • Cross Jewelers
  • D. Cole Jewelers
  • Dobra Tea Maine
  • East End Cupcake
  • Edgecomb Potters
  • Emerald City
  • Folia
  • Guitar Grave
  • Heron Point Gallery
  • Lalo Boutique
  • LeRoux Kitchen
  • Lisa Marie’s Made in Maine
  • Longfellow Books
  • Lovell Designs
  • Maine College of Art
  • Maine Potters Market
  • Maine’s Pantry
  • Material Objects
  • Mensroom Salon
  • Mexicali Blues
  • Nomads
  • Old Port Candy Co.
  • Old Port Card Works
  • Others! Fair Trade Coffee
  • Portmanteau
  • Rock Lobster
  • Serendipity
  • Something’s Fishy
  • Springers Jewelers
  • Stinky’s of Maine
  • Swiss Time
  • Tavecchia
  • The Leather Exchange
  • The Merchant Company
  • Treehouse Toys, Ltd.
  • Twist Boutique
  • Videoport
  • Zaftig

Here are descriptions of the charities to benefit from the Saturday sales, as posted by Portland’s Downtown District:

The Center for Grieving Children, based in Portland, serves more than 4,000 grieving children, teens, families, and young adults annually through peer support, outreach, and education. Offering our services at no charge, for as long as people need them, the Center’s mission is to provide loving support that encourages the safe expression of grief and loss and fosters each individual’s resilience and emotional well-being. The Center reaches individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds, and relies on financial contributions from individuals, businesses, foundations, United Way, and special events. For more information, call (207) 775-5216 or visit www.cgcmaine.org.


The Portland Police department secures grants to train under 21 individuals who are interested in a law enforcement career and give them the opportunity to work with the department for eight to 12 weeks. They are in a polo shirts uniform and use radios on the police frequency. The department has had them walking “beats” in the Arts District this past August and September and has proven effective in reducing problem behaviors on the street while providing a positive response from visitors. Funds raised for this program could help expand the hours and the downtown area covered.

Seth Koenig

About Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.