American Express Co. has thrown its support behind a campaign to make the Saturday after Thanksgiving into a day to patronize small businesses for holiday shopping.

Organizers are calling Nov. 26 “Small Business Saturday.”

It would join Black Friday, the post-Thanksgiving event where shoppers swarm the malls to begin their seasonal shopping in earnest, and Cyber Monday, the day following the long weekend, when online retailers see upticks in sales.

In San Diego, American Express is promoting a small business shopping event in North Park, in cooperation with the North Park Main Street organization. The event centers on the 3000 block of University Avenue and runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Organizers have arranged for Santa to be on hand, and for live music. American Express said some North Park restaurants will offer discounts to people who show proof of purchase from a North Park store, gallery or salon.

— Brad Graves