We may be a few months removed from the holiday shopping season, but some of us are still stewing over the broken promise of pre-Christmas Day deliveries from online retailers. And it appears we have reason to be disappointed with those retailers now that a study has found the majority of delays were their fault, not the postal carrier. [More]
Sure, St. Patrick’s Day isn’t until Monday, but since most of the people that will be celebrating the event are not Irish and are just looking for a reason to wear lots of green and act irresponsibly, that means the bars of America will be full of shamrock-faced revelers for the next few days, to the tune of more than a quarter of a billion dollars. [More]
Florists have a rare convergence of crappy conditions for this Valentine’s Day, typically their busiest day of the year. As snow and ice smack the East Coast, many businesses have concluded that they’d rather send their employees home safe to their loved ones than deliver dead plants to their customers’ loved ones. [More]
Reader Ben spotted something that didn’t quite fit in on the seasonal items shelf at his local Target. On the bottom of a shelving unit filled with pink and red stuffed animals and chocolate boxes, he noticed a 6-pack of Blue Moon beer. We all show our love in different ways, Ben. [More]
It surfaced on Twitter: a “romantic Valentine’s display” at a CVS store somewhere in southern New Jersey with a very pragmatic take on what customers might need for a special evening. On the shelf: cupcake-shaped bath bombs, roses, picture frames, condoms, a variety of personal lubricants, a dose of Plan B, some “male enhancement” supplements, and toy handcuffs. Hmm, some of those things don’t seem appropriate. [More]
Since shortly after Christmas Day, we’ve been tracking the spread of Easter Creep across the country. That’s when chocolate eggs and plastic bunnies hit store shelves before all of the unsold Christmas decorations are off the clearance shelf.
While you probably work with that guy who just can’t wait to start blasting Christmas music right after Halloween, many radio stations switch to an all-holiday format right after Thanksgiving. And despite the inevitable Grinches bah humbugging* at the first strains of “All I Want for Christmas,” that trend isn’t going to change as it’s paying off for radio stations. [More]
It’s a hectic time of year — shoppers dashing through the toy aisles in stores around the country, grabbing toys as they go to appease the mighty appetites of children who absolutely must have this or that source of entertainment. But this year’s annual survey of dangerous or toxic toys shows that it also pays to be aware of what you’re buying before you bestow it upon your kid. [More]
Whether you want to hug him or not or buy him for any of the children in your life, Elmo has been the reigning king of holiday toys for nigh on 20 years. But what is it about the fuzzy red Sesame Street monster that keeps him so popular? And why does he like being tickled so much? [More]
A few weeks ago, we shared with you a Holiday Creep mystery. A reader discovered Easter-themed ice cream on the shelf at Walmart, making us wonder: was it still on the shelves from 2013, or just early for 2014? The way things are going in retail, we couldn’t be sure. We wrote to Walmart corporate, and they didn’t answer. Then we got a response from the freezer case. So to speak. [More]
You can tell when fall is at hand, because items with pumpkin spice flavoring begin to fill store shelves. While retail has many other more obvious symbols of impending Christmas, one fits the theme of sweets flavored to taste like other things: gingerbread. No, not gingerbread cookies. Other things that are flavored to taste like gingerbread. [More]
Halloween is supposed to be a scary holiday and all, but the reason for the terror should not be “I severed an artery while carving the whiskers on my cat o’lantern.” You can create beautiful hollowed-out gourds without harming yourself or your family, whether it’s with the tools you already have in your knife drawer or with a special pumpkin-carving kit. [More]
In a statement released late on Friday afternoon, Hobby Lobby put out what it probably hopes is the last update in the controversy over the Oklahoma-based chain’s lack of Jewish holiday items on its shelves. What started as one customer’s simple search for a bar mitzvah card has become a pre-holiday public relations nightmare for the craft retailer. [More]
If just ceramic turkey figurines aren’t good enough for the Thanksgiving table that you’re obviously preparing three months in advance, maybe you can use some other decorations. Perhaps fall-colored oven mitts, holiday-themed dish towels, pumpkin picture frames, owl figurines, turkey window decals, or turkey figurines. [More]
Traditionally, “Black Friday” refers to the day after Thanksgiving and the semi-official kickoff of the winter holiday shopping season in the United States. In modern times, however, traditions are meaningless and retailers have decided to just throw Black Friday sales whenever they want. Like July 12. Or even February. [More]
Valentine’s Day is a chaotic time for florists, with temporary help mixing with regular staff to get everything delivered on time and to the right recipient. (Well, mostly.) In Chicago, one busy florist claims that a man took advantage of the floral fracas to walk off with 21 flower arrangements worth a total of $2,000.