El Tour de Tucson starts and ends at the Tucson Convention Center this Saturday. Before and after the event, visiting cyclists and their families are eating in Tucson restaurants and shopping in Tucson businesses.

Kimberly Neal, owner of 440 and Company on North Fourth Avenue, said she sees a boost in both sales and people walking through the doors in the days leading up to El Tour.

Neal said she is living the American Dream.

“I’m a Tucsonan, a Wildcat,” she said. “I graduated from Eller and I am an entrepreneur.”

440 and Company had been open for four years, but it’s weekends like this one that make it all worthwhile.

“It’s really a life blood for small businesses,” she said. When you have events like the Fourth Avenue Street Fair, El Tour de Tucson, and the markets that happen here, the small businesses do get excited because every purchase helps their families and staff.”

The same is being felt next door at Creations Boutique.

“We usually get a lot of incoming tourists,” said Caity Summer, manager at the boutique. “It can be anywhere

from families, local people as well who like to shop at our stores. It is a great boost in business having those events going on, as well.”

So, as people eat at the local restaurants and shop at the local businesses, it is a reminder to everyone visiting the Old Pueblo does have a lot to offer.

“Tucson is special,” Neal said.