K-Mart’s ads are pushing shoppers to do just that way earlier than we’re used to seeing, but local retailers are hopping on board. Though it’s still September, Thornes Marketplace already has the holidays in mind, especially since Thanksgiving falls on November deals, compared to last year’s 31. “I’m a little bit anxious just because it’s such a crucial time for local businesses, most local businesses, and so I’m obviously hopeful, Northampton has so much to offer,” said Bud Stockwell, Owner of Cornucopia Foods.
“Some merchants say that 35-40% of their businesses is the month of December or the holiday season, so, it’s a big impact. We’re going to pray for good weather,” Dan Yacuzzo, Executive Director of Northampton’s Business Improvement District stated.
As owner of Heavenly Chocolates, Stockwell can attest to that, but that’s not the only obstacle small business owners like him have to overcome.
The Holyoke mall has a few of those big box stores that have already started holiday advertising. Even though there is a shortened season, they’re not worried about losing sales. “Consumers are pretty savvy. If they know the deals are out there, they’ll get out early,” said William Rogalski, General Manager of the Holyoke Mall.
Even though the pressure might be on a little earlier than usual, Stockwell won’t cave. “Of course it’s not too early to start advertising. But i won’t. I’ll hold off a little bit, and I’ll get into people’s head just before the season starts,” Stockwell smiled.
Everyone there is also keeping an eye out for the weather, since that too could have an impact on sales.
Yacuzzo adds that the BID is planning on putting up over 26,000 LED lights on trees and buildings, can caroling for a month. It will all start on November 22nd, which is Northampton’s infamous Bag Day.