For the last 45 years, Impressions of Saratoga has been creating and curating products that celebrate everything Saratoga Springs, New York, has to offer from horses to history, starting out as a screen printer and rapidly expanding into retail.
Owners Marianne Barker and Maddy Zanetti embrace the town with more than the merchandise, however.
“We always have something going on,” says Barker of the charitable causes they support. That could mean something for animals like dogs and cats, or it could be a fundraiser or product that supports the retired racehorses and rescue horses like the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation and the Old Friends at Cabin Creek.
Closer to home
But Impressions of Saratoga’s most recent fundraiser hits even closer to home. In December 2023, the store launched its Adopt a Grandparent fundraiser. Customers could purchase an “Adopt a Grandparent” gift tag for $20. The funds raised were used to purchase gifts for the 350 residents in The Wesley Community’s Health Care Center.
“It’s the attitude of you get what you give and you give what you get, and we wouldn’t be here without the community.” — Marianne Barker
Zanetti’s grandmother was a resident of the center and Barker’s 97-year-old mother also is in a nursing facility.
“I see my mom every other week or so and there are so many people [in nursing care] that never see anyone, so we thought, ‘What can we do to help them have something at Christmas?’” explains Barker.
With the funds raised, Barker and Zanetti purchased plushies, hand creams, lip balms and other gift items for residents. Some of the store’s suppliers have also gotten in on the action, donating gift bags and offering discounts.
Doing what they do best
Throughout the years, Barker, her husband, who is retired, and Zanetti have volunteered their time with local business organizations, including the local Chamber of Commerce, but making monetary contributions has also been an important part of their philanthropy. “We are a small business, but we always try to give back as much as we can financially,” says Barker.
They’ve created T-shirts for different causes like the war in Ukraine and helped to preserve a carousel. “We just try to figure out what it is we do best and what people think of us for and we try to create something that compliments us and the cause. We are pretty proud of that,” says Barker.