Tag Archive | shops

Black Friday shopping: my story

I’ve talked about my love of Black Friday here. And I was able to share that with the entire Valley this weekend. Here’s my first-person account, with some photos:

It was 10 minutes to 6 Thursday night and I was feeling the adrenaline coursing through my veins as the Walmart associates ripped the cellophane off the cardboard DVD displays. I turned to my 17-year-old sister, Allison, who was about to begin her first Black Friday shopping experience.

“Now, I want you to know: if you fall, I’m not stopping for you,” I said. 20131202-093310.jpg

“What? Ashley, why would you do that?” she said.

“I just want you to know. This is the Hunger Games, and I can’t be held up,” I answered.

“Whatever,” she said.

It may seem dramatic, but in my 13 years of Black Friday shopping, one thing I’ve learned is that you can’t slow down for stragglers. Bargain hunting is a fine skill, one I look forward to honing every year following my Thanksgiving meal.

Back when my mother and I started our yearly Black Friday shopping session, the deals began at 6 a.m. Friday and involved you huddled outside a store in the cold, waiting for someone to unlock the store doors.

The deals were worth the potential hypothermia, especially when considering that it was the only way to afford that new Game Boy Advance that Allison, then 5 or 6, wanted. Plus, my mom and I enjoyed the time together, chatting and enjoying not being at work and school.

This year, the deals started earlier than ever — Walmart’s first “event” was at 6 p.m. Thursday — and mostly you just stand in line in the store, thanks to 24hour retail cycles.

But it’s still exciting.

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Now Trending on Facebook: Shopping on Thanksgiving?

One of the biggest stories this week on our Facebook page was the debate over whether it’s OK for stores to open on Thanksgiving in preparation for Black Friday.

With stores opening earlier than ever, people are talking about it – and there’s strong feelings on both sides.

(Look, personally, I’ll be shopping either way …. I’m poor and Black Friday is my favorite holiday of the year.)

Here’s what our Facebook friends had to say on this topic, which seems to stir a lot of emotion:

  • Brandi Reinhardt “No, it is not ok. Family is too much forgotten by employers due to greed. While some may be enjoying their Thanksgiving meal, others will be working their tails off for long hours and little pay and they have no choice. All in the name of corporate greed.”
  • Michael Doyne “It’s funny how the same people who say it’s greed that keeps business’ open on the holidays are the same ones who’ll complain when they can’t get something they need on a holiday. Retails job is to make money, if people don’t support them staying open they wouldn’t be. If you don’t like working holidays, find a job that is closed then. If you want to spend time with your family, do so. Nobody is making you go shopping on a holiday.”
  • Jeremy Brooks “Ok I understand about spending time with families on thanksgiving but what about people who like me work in the healthcare field and have to work holidays? Yes it’s my choice to work in that field so I accept the responsibility of working holidays so why can’t retail? I don’t get to spend Christmas morning with my kids because I have to work and you don’t hear me whining about it I do what I have to to earn a paycheck to support my children”
  • Jason Peterman “Ultimately we control the market. If we don’t shop at their stores they will rethink their position next year. If we do shop then it will only get more and more companies on board with the idea. Bottom line is retail is gonna give consumers what they want. Two options are don’t work in retail or don’t shop on holidays if u don’t like it and if u do then go out and spend your pants off or get a job in retail and enjoy the holiday pay!”

What do you think? Is it OK to have stores open on Thanksgiving?

You Might Hvae Missed It: Street of Shops

This Saturday, my mom and I were in the mood for some retail therapy (OK, it was me that needed the shopping trip, but that’s beside the point).

I didn’t necessarily feel like going to the mall, but didn’t know where else to get my shop on – so I suggested we try out a place I had heard of but never visited: The Street of Shops in Lewisburg.

We went and were so glad we did.

It was a fun afternoon of shopping for some unique and well-priced items in a cozy atmosphere. I couldn’t believe I hadn’t been there before with my love of shopping.

We did some early Christmas shopping and I got a picture to hang in my house – I spent $14 and my mom spent $20. You can’t beat that.

Anyway, it just goes to show you that even as long as we’ve lived here, you can still discover new and fun things in your own backyard. I know we’ll definitely be going back to visit again!

Any hidden gems that you like to visit in the Valley? Share them with me!