The Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta off Interstate 575 at Exit 9 will have “All Night Madness” Thursday night and Friday morning.
Horizon Group Properties oversees nine outlet malls, including the Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta, and CEO Gary Skoien said everyone is excited for what he believes will be a very busy weekend at the outlet mall in Woodstock.
“I think it’ll be very busy. Thanksgiving is later than ever, it’s as late as it could be, which means it’s a very, very short period between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Last year, there were six more shopping days, and because it’s later in the year, more people are thinking about Christmas than they would’ve been last year,” Skoien said. “I think that, while the economy is still in terrible shape, the stock market has been strong so a lot of people feel they have some wealth to shop.”
Outlet Shoppes spokeswoman Gina Slechta said the outlet mall is a great place to start Black Friday shopping.
“With the outlets shop industry, you’re already paying less. Then you start taking another 20 or 30 percent off and that’s some substantial savings,” Slechta said.
The outlet mall will be opening a day early for Black Friday shoppers, and Slechta said mall employees will do their best to minimize traffic woes during the big event.
“The shopping center will open at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving night and stay open all night,” Slechta said. “The shopping center has valet parking and has added additional parking to help accommodate traffic. All employees will park off the main lots to allow more room for shoppers.”
The All Night Madness event lasts through 6 a.m. Friday, but some sales don’t end until the mall closes Friday night.
Skoien said while outlet malls are opening earlier than ever this year, the malls have steadily been opening earlier from year to year.
“Over the last 10 years, there’s been more and more outlet centers that have been opened early, and now earlier, in the case of Atlanta for example,” Skoien said. “In the past, outlets had been opened, typically, at midnight. So that is a new things that’s occurring, and it’s occurring a lot of places. It really is occurring in response to consumer demand.”
Skoien said that it seems people like to have Thanksgiving with their families and then go out and shop.
“It’s now become kind of a trend,” he said of people wanting to shop on Thanksgiving night.
While most stores are offering their best sales during the All Night Madness event, some will continue with other sales and promotions throughout the day on Friday.
For example, American Eagle Outfitters at the Outlet Shoppes will give customers 50 percent off their purchase during the All Night Madness event, but will still offer 40 percent off after the event on Friday.
Not only can shoppers find sales at the outlet mall, Slechta said that children can come and enjoy a visit with Santa.
“The biggest thing is the sales, and we’ve got a Santa Claus that’s on the property,” Slechta said. “He’ll be there, not overnight because Santa’s got to feed his reindeer, but he’ll be there during the daytime hours on Black Friday and on Saturday.”
Slechta said visitors can check online to see what deals await them at the mall on Black Friday.
To get coupons and learn about sales and promotions before heading out to the mall, visit the Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta website at http://www.horizongroup.com/our-centers/atlanta/ and click on “Sales & Events” on the left column.
Slechta said there will also be special events, including a chance for shoppers to win big money, while listening to 94.1 FM on the radio.
“The most exciting event is our Star 94 radio promotion where people have the chance to win $94,000,” Slechta said. “It’s a listen-to-win contest … they give you clues to be able to know a gift certificate number that is available. If you can figure out what those numbers are, you’re the winner.”
The Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta will open today at 8 p.m. and stay open through Friday at 9 p.m. On Saturday the store will be open from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta is in Woodstock, at 915 Ridgewalk Parkway, Suite 899.