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Samantha Christmann

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


Tops, Wegmans and Walmart all sold frozen, raw chicken products that have been recalled due to concerns about Salmonella contamination.Maine-based Barber Foods has recalled 1.7 million pounds of stuffed chicken breasts sold nationwide and in Canada. Two illnesses were reported associated with consumption of the product.The affected food bears the inspection mark “P-276” an…

Upstate Niagara Cooperative, a collective of Western New York dairy farmers, will supply Greek yogurt to several school districts in New York State.The member-owned co-op was selected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to supply districts in Buffalo, Brentwood, Waterford and Halfmoon as part of the National School Lunch Program. It successfully completed a two-year pilo…

Business

Gap is closing a quarter of its North American stores, and its Boulevard Mall location is one of them.The McKinley Mall will also lose its Gap Kids location.The Boulevard store is one of that mall’s longest-tenured tenants, having opened in 1976. It is expected to close by the end of the month.“We look at this as an opportunity to fill with another quality tenant,” said Be…

Eastern Hills Mall has kicked off its Children’s Summer Theatre schedule.It brings free children’s entertainment into the mall’s Center Court every Saturday at 11 a.m. through Aug. 15.The mall will host an interactive musical performance by Glenn Colton Saturday, children’s painting by West End Crafts July 25, Bubblemania Aug. 1, magician Paul Antonio Aug. 8, and comedic j…

My friend Becky gets free and ridiculously cheap stuff from Amazon all the time. We’re talking everything from electronics, toiletries and kitchen gadgets to art supplies, jewelry and clothing.Every day, new stuff – selfie sticks, wine decanters, gourmet olive oil – lands in boxes on her doorstep. Sometimes she pays $1 per item, sometimes it’s $3, but often it’s free. To g…

A “free government grant” scam has been increasingly targeting Western New Yorkers and just recently defrauded two local men of thousands of dollars.In one instance, thieves stole $2,000 from an 85-year-old man in Jamestown. A letter from a company calling itself Resource Program said he was eligible for a grant from the government that would help him pay his bills and mak…

Block Club magazine will release its final issue Saturday.The Buffalo-based, free publication launched in 2007 as a local lifestyle magazine. In 2011, it shifted focus to a more literary format that concentrated on stories about Buffalo’s evolution.Block Club’s Summer 2015 issue is its 40th. It has distributed 750,000 copies and won four ADDY Awards for design and editoria…

Customers at Wegmans’ Amherst Street store in Buffalo may soon be sipping wine with their $6 meals.Wegmans has applied with the New York State Liquor Authority for a permit to sell single servings of beer and wine for on-premises consumption inside the store’s Market Cafe.If approved, the store would install two small, self-service refrigerated cases near the sub sandwich …

The Automobile Association of America has just bestowed one of its highest designations on a property owned by Buffalo-based Hart Hotels.The company’s 1000 Islands Harbor Hotel, a full-service property on the St. Lawrence River in Clayton, has been given Four-Diamond status. It is one of just 24 hotels in Upstate New York to have that designation. Two other Hart Hotels’ pr…

Black Squirrel Distillery will unveil a new craft spirit Saturday called Mapleshine.A non-aged spirit, it is made in the style of moonshine using New York State maple. It is fermented and distilled by hand in small batches. Each 375-milliliter bottle retails for $27.99 and boasts an alcohol content of 90 proof.Mapleshine will be available to the public beginning at noon Sa…

Business

Megabus is expanding its reserved seating program from 10 seats per bus to 20 seats.In February, the low-fare bus service began offering customers the chance to reserve seats together for an added fee of $1 to $7. It allowed them to have first dibs on the most popular seats, sit in any seat of their choosing, and guarantee seating with family and friends when booking toget…

Business

Buffalo expatriates living in North Carolina no longer have to fill coolers with Sahlen’s hot dogs to bring back after visits home. The hometown favorite is now being sold at certain Harris Teeter grocery stores in the greater Charlotte area.Sahlen’s is test-marketing its products at 60 Harris Teeter locations in Charlotte and elsewhere in Mecklenburg County with hopes of …

Robocalls.When you read that word just now, your blood pressure rose, didn’t it? Automated phone calls are universally detested. It’s the one thing everyone in our country can agree on – unsolicited phone calls are annoying. They’re the main reason I no longer have a landline.The Federal Trade Commission has received as many as 200,000 complaints about automated calls in a…

Business

Set another place at the bar for the latest spiritmaker to join Buffalo’s burgeoning distillery renaissance. Tommyrotter Distillery, which makes spirits from New York State corn and wheat, will open its doors in the Larkin District on July 18.The company, owned by partners Sean Insalaco and Robert Finan, will start by selling vodka for $30 per bottle and American gin for $…

Local News

Teresa Klemann, of Amherst, is one of the 4.68 million salaried workers who would earn more money under President Obama’s proposal to change the threshold that makes workers eligible for overtime pay.At first blush, she liked the idea of getting paid for the time she put in beyond 40 hours each week. But then she started wondering how her employer, an aftermarket auto part…