As of Wednesday, December 7, 2016
SUNNYSIDE Lower Yakima Valley retailers will see green this holiday season as shoppers buy gifts for loved ones.
It's just that many won't see business start to pick up until after Black Friday, which was last Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.
"We don’t open up for Black Friday," Dale Beck of Beck Jewelers said. The family business has shops in Sunnyside and Prosser.
"Our business usually starts around the first of December," he said.
Prosser Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Larelle Michener said many businesses in her community focus on after Friday sales.
"Several retailers I talked to said Black Friday is often slow,” she said.
“They see a jump on Small Business Saturday,” Michener said.
That was true of her family’s farm in Grandview, Bill’s Berry Farm.
“We did record retail sales last weekend for Christmas trees,” Michener said. “We expected it to be busy, but we’re just surprised how many we did. It’s a positive sign.”
And some area retailers open on Black Friday saw some positive signs.
Sister to Sister, 10 Merlot Drive in Prosser, had hourly flash sales on Black Friday, with deals on everything from Christmas décor to boots and jewelry.
Ace Hardware, 615 Yakima Valley Hwy., was “... pretty busy,” employee Natasha Gonzales said of Black Friday. “It was good. Things stayed at a steady pace all day.”
Blehyl’s vice president of retail Russ Ward, said the company’s retail stores did well on Black Friday.
“It was good. We typically are pretty steady that day,” he said. “We definitely saw some customers in the Christmas spirit.”
Ward said the biggest shopping rush is yet to come.
“We’ll have more here in a couple of weeks,” he said. “The first and second weeks of December are our busiest.”