Jackson merchants report brisk sales on day after Thanksgiving
Winter is here. The Town Square lights are lit and Jackson Hole Mountain Resort’s slopes are open.
To celebrate the holiday season many people shopped at local stores this weekend to take advantage of several businesses’ Black Friday sales.
Chain stores Staples, Kmart and Sports Authority had sales going on all weekend, as did many small business.
Ian McIver, manger for Sports Authority, said the store had a buy-one-get-one-free sale on gloves. It also offered a $40 cash rebate with the purchase of a GoPro, and Nikon binoculars were half off.
The sporting goods store was busy throughout the weekend, but Friday was the day it received the most traffic. McIver said sales were up 14 percent for Black Friday this year compared to last year. He thinks Jackson Hole Mountain Resort’s opening on Friday helped business.
“Our store tends to respond to the resort culture and the weather,” McIver said.
Snow is on the ground and people are eager to ski and snowboard. McIver said the resort’s $6 special for its 50th anniversary gave people the extra push to rent equipment to go skiing.
“The $6 deal they were doing made the rental shop go off, which was great,” he said. “We usually see some peripheral sales when people come by just to rent skis, because they usually end up buying something before they leave.”
John Frechette, co-owner of the stores Made and Mountain Dandy, said the resort’s opening also encouraged people to stop by Jackson’s small businesses.
He said winter activities get people excited about Christmas shopping. Both Made and Mountain Dandy were quite busy Friday.
“Black Friday is always a busy day for us,” Frechette said. “It’s certainly not like Walmart or other stores you see on the news. No one got trampled in Gaslight Alley, which was nice.”
Made and Mountain Dandy are part of the Holiday Passport Shopping Event, which kicked off Friday. As part of the kickoff, all items from both stores had 25 percent markdowns Friday.
The two gift shops are two of 12 businesses participating in the Holiday Passport Shopping Event. Stio, Jackson Bootlegger, Paper and Grace, Knit on Pearl and other stores also offered 25 percent off all items on Friday.
While the big sale was on Friday, the shopping event will continue through Dec. 13.
Customers can still pick up passports at participating stores and receive stamps for their passports with any purchase.
People who gather six stamps are entered into a drawing to win a prize donated by one of the participating stores.
“The participating stores donate at least $100 worth of prizes,” Frechette said. “There is probably $1,500 worth of prizes total.”
Deals from local restaurants are also on the passport. If someone shows his or her passport at one of the restaurants, it will offer that person the deal that is printed on it.
“Cowboy Coffee is buy-one-get-one-free,” Frechette said.
Other eateries listed on the passport include Persephone, Healthy Being Juicery, Local and Trio.
The shopping event is just one way Jackson businesses encouraged residents to shop local this weekend.
Small Business Saturday attracted people to downtown Jackson. American Express used to give credit to customers who shopped at a small business on the Saturday after Black Friday.
This year American Express didn’t offer a small business deal, but the Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce still celebrated the day by giving away $25 gift cards for local shops and $100 Jackson Hole Jewelry gift certificates.
On Friday, after Town Square was lit and Santa Claus made his grand entrance (see page 3A), the chamber called out the gift card and certificate winners.
By winning gift cards and certificates, people were encouraged to return to Town Square to shop on Saturday, Frechette said.
“The hope is that people tried to find something local rather than driving to Idaho Falls to go to Target,” he said.