Black Friday a shot in the arm for NSB small businesses like the Pink Flamingo at Petals

THE HOLIDAYS /Christmas on Canal and provide 24/7 online-media coverage for a 21st-century world

Photos by Dale Smith.

Wal-Mart at the NSB Regional Shopping Center on State Road 44 wasn't the only happening place in New Smyrna Beach for Black Friday holiday shoppers. Canal Street and Flagler Avenue merchants showcased bargains too. Bright lights and a window of a Christmas wonderland at the Pink Flamingo at Petals, 201 Canal Street, beckoned shoppers Friday night. 

Editor's note: The following story was submitted by contributing writer Dale Smith:

NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- Merchants on Canal Street saw a busy day after Thanksgiving, also known as Black Friday, having hoped for a better-than-usual influx of shoppers from a year ago when the economy was bottoming out.

There were far more shoppers after dark Friday  on Canal Street in New Smyrna Beach as shown in this photo.

Typically, merchants, whether small businessmen or big box retailers, pray for day-after Thanksgiving sales to push them over the top of the profit summit, rather than seeing red. Pink Flamingo at Petals, a local florist and home decoration center and a newcomer to Canal Street, is no different in that regard.

Owner Angela Tully said she experienced something her shop has never seen in the past -- lots of walk-ins that resulted in sales.

The florist was located on 3rd Avenue for 19 years before moving to Canal Street on Aug. 1. The shop, at 201 Canal St., drew lots of attention from the holiday crowd Friday night as "Christmas on Canal" kicked off the holiday season.

The shop’s windows were truly a Christmas paradise to behold. Trees, wreaths and plenty of lights brought in the curious shoppers. An artificial palm tree, decorated over a support pole in front of the shop, showed the versatility and talent of the shop’s owner. Balloons from the shop bobbed from the wrists of children leaving the Pink Flamingo.

The cash register was ringing as well as shoppers couldn’t resist the plentiful array of holiday decorating items.

For Tully, it was an especially hectic Black Friday. Her staff was preparing for five weddings on Saturday, which meant lots of floral arrangements. And while those wedding plans were being taken care of, shoppers were strolling in and out of the shop all day and evening with the promise of another busy day on Saturday with the Coastal Market starting at 9 a.m.

“We have been busy,” Tully said. “We’ve sold a lot and the kids are getting their balloons. I get such a kick out of seeing the kids with the balloons.”

The Pink Flamingo at Petals, with its colorful ornaments and decorations, was an ete-opener for out-of-town shoppers like Stacey Hendricks of  Winter Springs.

Stacey Hendricks shopped at the Pink Flamingo at Petals Friday night. This was the Winter Springs' resident's first trip to New Smyrna Beach and she was impressed.

“We arrived for the holiday (Thanksgiving),” Hendricks said. “We didn’t do much shopping today but went to the beach instead.”

The Pink Flamingo at Petals is one of a few merchants here who are participating in the American Express’s promotion to support “Small Business Saturday” where shoppers who use their American Express card can get a $25 rebate on their account for simply shopping at small businesses.

“We promoted the event and hope our clients will take advantage of the savings,” Tully said. The promotion runs through Sunday, Nov. 29.

About the contributing writer:

Dale Smith is a resident of New Smyrna Beach, who has reported on local news in Volusia County since October 2009.  His writing background includes a mix of journalism and public relations in several community newspapers and a p.r. firm in northern Virginia. He attended Barton Academy in Barton, Vt., and the Cambridge (Mass.) School of Broadcasting for radio & TV broadcasting.

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