Shop Local

Shopping locally is a great way for residents to help their own local economy by keeping money flowing through their community. It is even better when residents get something back for shopping local, and that is exactly what the township of East Brunswick decided to do in 2017 when they began their Shop Local Initiatives, first, with the Shop East Brunswick Rewards Card and then with the Estate Card.

“We have had the Shop EB Program active since last summer,” said Jonathan Sternesky, the township’s Economic Development Officer. “In that time, we have had thousands of transactions. The average rebate per swipe has been $3.76, but in some recent months, the average rebate per swipe has been over $8.”

How does it work? The Shop East Brunswick Rewards Card, when used at participating businesses, will save a percentage of the purchase. The participating vendors determine the set percentage they will offer when they sign up. All savings are accumulated throughout the year and are applied toward property taxes in the summer. Renters and out-of-towners can also participate by requesting their rebate be sent in the form of a yearly check.

“Every time you shop, 5 to 10 percent of your purchase will accumulate in your card in the form of a rebate,” Sternesky said. “There was a study done in 2003 which showed that for every dollar spent locally or at a local establishment, nearly 45 percent of that revenue will stay in the local community. In contrast, at a chain, only 14 percent of revenue stays local. Part of the motivation behind doing this program is that it has been shown shopping locally keeps the money in the local economy at rates three times higher than shopping at a chain.”

Moreover, the numerous benefits continue to roll in for East Brunswick.

“These programs have brought hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue into the local economy,” Sternesky said. “We anticipate that those who consistently use their cards at participating businesses will see a noticeable reduction in their property taxes.”

By Brooke Payne

Food and Restaurants

– Bollywood Tadka Indian Restaurant
– The Colonial Diner
– East Brunswick Chinese Restaurant
– Garden State Bar
– Gusto Grill
– JSBBQ & Catering Co.
– Ibby’s Mediterranean Cuisine
– Mimino Restaurant
– Tilted Kilt East Brunswick

Beauty, Span and Tanning

– Hand & Stone
– Tekniques Salon
– A Cut Above Barber Shop
– Tuscana Salon

Specialty Services

– Christy’s Floral
– Malkin’s Functional Footwear
– Varsity Summer Academy
– Ryders Lane Wine & Spirits


– Lexington Pharmacy
– Windsor Pharmacy

Wellness and Fitness

– Jazzercise
– The Max Fitness Challenge of East Brunswick

Home Improvement

– Brunswick Design LLC
– 18 Lumber Company
– Temperature Pro Central NJ

Professional Services

– Daniel Kirshner, Attorney at Law, LLC
– Do Not Throw It Away LLC
– K.Y. Tapya CPA
– Sapiro, Gottlieb & Kroll

Photography, Video and Party Planning

– Lifetyme Photo and Video

Automotive Sales and Services

– Open Road Acura of East Brunswick
– Route 18 Auto