By Lana Bradstream, Times Republican
With the rate of inflation and everything costing more, many consumers are waiting for Black Friday — the day after Thanksgiving — to get holiday shopping done.
The Marshalltown Central Business District (MCBD) is participating in another shopping event — Pink Weekend. It begins on Thursday, Nov. 16, which is also MCBD’s Third Thursday, a monthly feature. On Third Thursday, downtown businesses will operate extended hours.
On Pink Friday, Nov. 17, downtown businesses will offer deals on products. It is the small business version of Black Friday.
The MCBD extended Pink Friday, which is a nationwide movement to shop local, to Pink Weekend to encourage Marshalltown residents to shop in small businesses first. The extension means the 31st Holiday Stroll on Saturday, Nov. 18, is included in the Pink Weekend.
The Holiday Stroll this year will feature concerts, a lighted holiday parade, Santa’s Workshop, the Festival of Trees, a kids carnival, the Christmas Craft Village, carriage rides and holiday photography.
Participation in Pink Friday was the idea of Brittany Tow, the owner of Brit Marie’s Country Boutiques.
“I love that we are going to run it as a Pink Weekend from Thursday to Saturday to include Third Thursday and Holiday Stroll and include all of the downtown stores that want to participate,” she said.
Even though this is Tow’s third year for Pink Friday, it is the first for the MCBD. She said Pink Weekend will feature drinks, snacks, business promotions and excellent shopping.
“This is a great way to get out and shop early before you hit the big box stores,” Tow said.
The Pink Friday movement was created in 2020. Since then, more than 15,000 businesses across the country have participated.
“Any small business can participate in Pink Friday,” Tow said.
Created by The Boutique Hub, Pink Friday celebrates the backbone of local communities.
“Pink Friday was created to shine a spotlight on small businesses and encourage everyone to shop consciously during the holiday season,” said Ashley Alderson, founder and CEO of The Boutique Hub. “There has never been a more important time than now to ‘Shop Small First’. Small businesses make a big impact in America’s communities, and it’s important that we support them as much as possible.”