Holiday Shopping in the Collar City

By Record Staff, newsroom@troyrecord.com, @TroyRecord on Twitter

TROY>> Most Trojans have heard tales of Troy’s infamous Red Light District from a bygone era, but this season downtown merchants are creating a new Green Light District.
This Troy Night Out, Nov. 28, all retailers and restaurants that stay open until 7 p.m. will have on display a decorative green light bulb to signify that downtown Troy is open for business at night. Most venues will be offering discounts and sales and participating businesses will shine green lights in their windows to signify that downtown is open for holiday business.
Troy Night Out is a monthly arts and cultural event that takes place the last Friday of every month 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. throughout the city’s downtown. This month, it also coincides with Black Friday, America’s busiest holiday shopping day of the year.
Troy's Red Light District, an area with a high concentration of prostitution, was allegedly known coast to coast until it was shut down in the 1940s. Looking forward, "I think Troy's Green Light District could be even more famous," said Troy’s Downtown Business Improvement District executive director Erin Pihlaja. "But in order to be a shopping destination, people have to know we’ll be open for business when they arrive. Green means we're 'good to go.'"
The downtown businesses also recently launched a campaign branding themselves as the “Mall-ternative” and alternative and more versatile shopping experience, in comparison to local shopping malls.
The Troy Mall-ternative campaign will also be participating in the American Express Small Business Saturday on Nov. 29, a national effort to encourage Americans to shop local.
On Monday night, volunteer shop and restaurant owners along with other artists and friends, met at the Lucas Confectionery wine bar to screen print 200 re-usable canvas totes in preparation for Small Business Saturday on Nov. 29.
Those who purchase  the special reusable shopping tote bags, with the "enjoy troy." symbol, will receive discounts at participating downtown retailers Saturday. More than 20 businesses will carry the bags and customers can purchase them for three dollars. Inside the bag will be a list of participating venues where customers can use their tote as a passport to access discounts and savings all day.
“Every year you hear people complain about what a hassle holiday shopping can be,” Pihlaja said in a press release. “We don’t think it has to be that way. Shopping downtown in small stores is a social event. The pace is slower, the lighting is nicer, and the products are unique. Local business owners might be your neighbor or friend. It’s an enjoyable experience.”

For more information visit http://www.downtowntroy.org/special-events/troy-night-out.html.


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