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Samantha Christmann

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


Business

Five Star Urgent Care will open its second Chautauqua County office at 390 East Fairmount Ave. in Lakewood Friday. It will be the company's 19th location, all in New York. The walk-in centers are a patient alternative to emergency rooms. Five Star will hold an open house Thursday, where the public can tour the facility and meet staff. It will also host a blood drive …

Business

H&M, a fast-fashion retailer based in Sweden, will open its Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls USA location at noon Thursday. The 21,000-square-foot store will carry clothing for men, women, teens, newborns and children and will have a store-within-a-store format for accessories. The store sits in the mall's new wing across from Forever 21. It takes over space …

Business

If you signed up for a free Instacart Express membership when the company first came to town last year, your card is about to be charged $149 for a new membership starting Aug. 1. The free year trial offered last August expires at the end of July, but automatically renews upon expiration. If you don't want to be charged for an automatic renewal, you should cancel you…

Business

It looks like the Bon-Ton store at Eastern Hills Mall won't sit empty for long. Raymours Furniture Co., which does business as Raymour and Flanigan, will assume the store's lease, according to papers filed in a Delaware bankruptcy court. The Bon-Ton store at Eastern Hills Mall encompasses 151,208 square feet. In comparison, the Raymour and Flanigan store at 1459 Niag…

Business

If a merger between Idaho-based private grocery store chain Albertsons and Pennsylvania-headquartered public drug store Rite Aid goes through, Western New Yorkers could have a very different experience on future trips to the drugstore. The merger is not a done deal yet. It must be approved by investors, some of whom have vocally opposed the merger and are pushing for mo…

Business

Fisher-Price has laid off 50 employees at its East Aurora headquarters as part of a wider layoff at its parent company, Mattel. Back-office workers were primarily affected by the job eliminations, which were described as a cost-cutting measure by Mattel spokesperson Alex Clark. The cuts will allow the company to focus its resources on more "business-critical" areas, suc…

Business

Dollar General has fired the man seen on a viral video calling the police on a customer redeeming a coupon deal at its Genesee Street store. "Based upon our investigation, we believe that certain aspects of this matter, including the involvement of law enforcement, were not handled in accordance with our policies and expectations. For this reason, we have made the decis…

Business

If you’re thinking about getting an Instant Pot Ultra but you’re not sure whether you should pull the trigger, I’m here to tell you: go for it. Trust me, I resisted the Instant Pot craze for a long time, too, but my dad got me one for my birthday and it has completely enriched my life. Here’s why. • You’ll throw out less food. The whole reason I wanted my Instant Pot Ul…

Business

UPDATE: 'Coupon Ken' fired after calling cops on extreme couponer at Dollar General It's not uncommon for a savvy customer to understand a store's couponing policy better than its own employees, but it's not every day an employee calls the police on said savvy shopper. Perhaps that's why video has gone viral of an incident allegedly showing the manager of a Buffalo D…

Business

The Hobby Lobby store at 2090 George Urban Blvd in Depew has closed. Hobby Lobby has remaining stores at 6743 Transit Road in Lancaster, 3701 McKinley Parkway in Hamburg and 1560 Military Road in Niagara Falls. Retailers across Western New York and the country have been trimming their brick-and-mortar footprint as more consumers turn to online shopping. A local hobby…

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…