Her Times
By Pam Parker Erie Times-News staff blogger
Pam Parker's blog takes on everything from women's fun to momisms to lifestyles around Lake Erie and real estate. She'll take you down Memory Lane, up through sports and fun and off the grid. Get ready for laughs — it's more than just Pam. It's Pamdemonium.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1821
Posts tagged ‘Black Friday’
Posted: December 20th, 2012

There’s good news for crazy shoppers like me. Close to 25 percent of the holiday sales take place the last week before Christmas. So says Dee Lee of CBS in Boston. She is a famous financial planner quoted on all the top news shows and in magazines.

A study on Shopadvisor.com suggested that bargain hunters in the last two weeks before Christmas find steep discounts — even steeper than Black Friday. The selection will be slimmer, but it depends on what you’re looking for.

More advice from Shopadvisor.com — avoid day-after-Christmas shopping. Dec. 29 is the date that prices really fall. I can vouch for that. Last year, I bought my hubby a coat before Christmas. We returned it after Christmas and bought a nicer coat, a scarf, a belt and a turtleneck — all for the price of the original coat — which had been on sale. Ho ho ho.

I’m out shopping today and probably tomorrow. I just discovered that some online retailers still offer delivery by Christmas. Well, that’s good news! When my kids were young, I made an annual Christmas Eve visit to Old Navy to scoop up the deals. Everything was marked down. That stop is on my list, and I am checking it twice.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom to three and step-grandmom to one.

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: December 1st, 2009

I’m not your typical Black Friday bargain shopper. There is no bargain,  no amount of money, that is is worth standing in line for hours on end, camping in front of an electronics store on Thanksgiving night or fighting with angry shoppers for.

I don’t even like shopping in general anymore because I just don’t have the time or energy for it.

And, yet, every Black Friday, there I am with the sister and the sister-in-laws and my mom and nieces (those old enough to keep up) standing in ridiculously long lines that snake to the back of the store.

I have to go. It’s tradition.

Truth be told, I’m in it for the free lunch and frozen margaritas (my mom always buys us lunch at Ruby Tuesdays…it’s tradition, you know).

Over the years, we’ve seen the local department stores make huge improvements in their Black Friday customer service strategies. Old Navy has a couple of employees to entertain & play games with customers in line (they even hand out coupons you can use at the register). Kohl’s has two lines that serve the two groups of registers and, most importantly, an employee who feeds those registers one shopper at a time and stands guard to be sure things don’t get unruly.

And, then, there’s Target.

This is the store that I now consider the epicenter of Black Friday Hell in Erie, Pa.

They’ve got bargains, no doubt. But a cart? You’re going to have to steal one or find one that was abandoned by a shopper who gives up on the 19,000 long lines to the registers.

The lines at Target (and this is two years running now) are not only long, but completely unorganized and chaotic. There were some people standing in looooooonnnngggg lines (I heard for up to 90 minutes) that were supposed to be feeding 5 or 6 registers, but…then, some people would just get in line at those registers, completely unaware that they were “cutting.”  The ones in the long line got angry at the “cutters” and the yelling and heated discussions began.

Another incident this year stuck in my craw. The manager (I’m assuming it was a manager, but I don’t know that) actually came out and asked the two black guys in front of me if they had cut in line. Now, why single them out….all these people (including myself and my posse) had supposedly “cut,” too?  Maybe it was nothing, but it bothered me.

The bottom line is this: Target should have had an employee (or two or three) managing the lines up front and keeping shoppers orderly instead of allowing angry, tired, crabby shoppers to fight it out for themselves.

I don’t care what kind of bargains they have next Black Friday, I won’t be shopping at Target on Black Friday until they get their crap together. (They are what Kohl’s used to be.)

Despite my lousy experience at Target, I had a successful Black Friday shopping day, crossing off nearly everyone on my list which I now keep on my oh-so-handy Blackberry.

Did you go Black Friday shopping? Any nightmare stores we should avoid? Any stores who had their stuff together and are worth a stop next year? Post a reply!