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Samantha Christmann

Samantha Christmann covers retail for The Buffalo News and write the Discount Diva column.


Business

Just about every day, my daughter Sloane turns to me and asks, “How many days until my birthday?” So we ask Alexa, who tells us we’ve got something like 87 days to go, and Sloane turns to me with her eyes wide and her mouth agape. “Is that a lot?!” she asks, hoping it’s not. Remember when we used to look forward to our birthdays all year long? We used to dream abo…

Business

The Royalton Hartland Community Library wants you to come get your geek on. It will hold a mini comic book convention starting at 1 p.m. Thursday at the library, 9 S. Vernon St. in Middleport. Dress up as your favorite character, learn how to make your own comic book and then settle in for some pizza and watch "The Avengers." There will be $200 worth of prizes from P…

Business

Wegmans didn't just come out on top of a list of other supermarkets. This time, Wegmans outpaced 317 other companies across 20 consumer industries from airlines to automobiles in a survey that measures the positives and negatives of customer experiences. In the latest Temkin Emotion Ratings, based on a survey of 10,000 customers, Wegmans landed the highest overall ratin…

Local News

Build-A-Bear Workshop ran a pay-your-age promotion Thursday. Things went about as poorly as you might have expected them to. Cheektowaga Police were called to the Walden Galleria before 11 a.m. to control what was called an "unruly crowd" of about 1,300 people waiting in line for the sale, according to Chief David Zack. Another seven different law enforcement agencie…

Business

Remember in the old days how people used to do “Christmas In July” sales? They’re called “Black Friday in July” sales now. And the granddaddy of all Black Friday in July sales is called Amazon Prime Day, which hits the web at 3 p.m. Monday. If there’s one thing you need to know about Prime Day, it’s this: Just like Black Friday, there’s a lot of hype and a lot of medioc…

Business

You might want to consider swapping out the lemon in your ice water for cucumber, and Beyoncé may want to consider switching to an entirely different beverage altogether. The price of lemons is going up, and it isn't expected to drop again for months, according to the Produce Alliance, a group that procures fresh fruits and vegetables for the food service industry. T…

Business

Shipt will begin offering same-day delivery in the Buffalo market on July 12. The company uses independent contractors to shop and deliver orders. In addition to delivering for Target, which owns the company, it will also deliver for Gordon Restaurant Market, a food-service supply store in North Buffalo. Much like Instacart, customers place orders online at the Shipt…

Business

She may not have launched a car into outer space or invented the pastime of our generation, but Colleen Wegman's employees at the Wegmans grocery chain like her better than Tesla's employees like Elon Musk or Facebook's employees like Mark Zuckerberg, according to a list of the "Top 100 CEOs", put out by Glassdoor.com, an employment website. Wegman came in at No. 9 on t…

Business

Few industries have seen such sweeping disruption in the digital age as photography, whether it's Kodak film reaching near obsolescence or cameras being replaced by iPhones. But the Campos Group is one photo-based business that has successfully made the transition. Founded by George Campos on Sheridan Drive in 1979, Campos Photography Center started as a darkroom ren…

Business

Majoring in the liberal arts is all fun and games until it’s time to find a job. I should know, I did it myself. If you don’t believe me, just ask my friends the philosophy major and the aspiring archaeologist. Unless you have a trust fund or a passion on which you’re willing to risk a stable income, I wouldn’t recommend it. On the other hand, if your reason for a…

Business

The Walden Galleria draws Canadian shoppers, and now it has attracted a Canadian retailer. Showcase, a seller of trendy toys, gadgets and health, beauty and home products, will open a location at the mall at the end of July on the upper level near Dick's Sporting Goods. It will fill 1,250 square feet formerly occupied by Icing. Showcase is known for using the fast-fa…

Business

Yes, there are the public pools, the beaches and the splash parks, but where can you go to stay cool if you don't want to don a bathing suit? Here are a few options. Hit the ice at HarborCenter. In the immortal words of Andre 3000, "What's cooler than being cool? Ice cold." Check the public skate and open hockey schedule at rectimes.com/harborcenter, or take in anoth…

Business

Gander Mountain has returned to 880 Young St. in Tonawanda. Sort of. Now called Gander Outdoors, the store is owned by Camping World Holdings, an Illinois-headquartered outdoor and camping retailer, which bought Gander Mountain's assets in bankruptcy court. Its CEO is Marcus Lemonis, star of CNBC's "The Profit." The strategy for Gander Outdoors is to operate in sm…

Business

It’s almost the Fourth of July, and what better way to celebrate your freedom than to risk burning your house down? Just kidding. I’m not here to talk about whether fireworks are appropriate or safe, or whether they should be featured at your cookout. It’s not my place to say whether you should abstain out of respect for skittish pets, sick neighbors or veterans with po…

Business

Build-A-Bear Workshop has opened a new location at the Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls and it is very different from its other store at Walden Galleria. The new store is a "concourse shop," a new store format which is basically a kiosk that sits open to each hallway of the mall's main concourse near the food court. The first 20 people at the store's grand opening Sa…