ESCANABA - Businesses in downtown Escanaba are gearing up for the start of the holiday shopping season by participating in Black Friday sales a few days early next week on Tuesday.
A total of 60 retailers and service-related businesses are getting ready for Tuesday's event being held in conjunction with the lighting of the downtown Christmas tree.
"By doing Black Friday sales early on Tuesday, people will get an understanding of the great things the downtown has to offer," said Peggy O'Connell Schumann, president of the Escanaba Downtown Partners in Business which is organizing Tuesday's downtown shopping extravaganza in conjunction with the Escanaba Downtown Development Authority (DDA).
Participating businesses will be open later with many offering special sale deals to kick off the holiday shopping season downtown. Sale specials will run between 3 to 9 p.m. at retailers and 3 p.m. to closing at restaurants and bars on Tuesday, explained Schumann.
Customers are encouraged to participate in a raffle that evening. Entry forms are available from downtown businesses which will be stamping the forms. Once 10 stamps are received, customers can enter a drawing for two tickets to the Dec. 8 Packers-Falcons football game and a $50 gas card.
Many stores will be offering beverages and snacks for the holiday shoppers, Schumann added. Free limousine rides will be available on Ludington Street from 4 to 10 p.m.
The city's tree-lighting event will take place at the DDA's center court located at 1025 Ludington St. at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Free horse-drawn carriage rides will be available from 5 to 8 p.m. starting at center court.
DDA Director Ed LeGault said, "This is an opportunity for everyone to get together and look forward to the holidays as well as enjoy the festive activities going on downtown."
Music, hot cocoa, and cookies will be provided at center court beginning at 6 p.m. Santa is also expected to take a break from his busy holiday schedule to visit downtown.
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Jenny Lancour, (906) 786-2021, ext. 143, firstname.lastname@example.org