Update November 23, 2011. Click here to raad about Thanksgiving weekend sales / Black Friday in Queens 2011.
Black Friday Was Busy But A Bit Grey
Queens / November 28, 2008. The weather for Black Friday was generally good, with highs around fifty on a nice unseasonably warm sunny day. Rain is forecast for Sunday, so holiday shoppers might want to do their shopping tomorrow on Saturday. The reason they call it 'Black' Friday is that historically it is the day when a lot of retailers start making a profit for the year. We did a survey of the main shopping districts in Queens and here's what we found.
Plenty of people were out and about, but not any more than we would normally expect to see on a normal Saturday afternoon. It's worth taking into consideration that while many people get the day off as an added Thanksgiving holiday, just as many and even more don't. When we compare this anecdotally to what we saw last year, there was not a big change. However, with respect to shoppers carrying package, we saw a notable difference. There were very few people carrying holiday store bags or packages. This you can see in all of the photos we took in the commercial areas in Sunnyside, Jackson Heights, Forest Hills and Jamaica. Scroll down to read / view the complete story on black Friday shopping.
Queens Shopping - Black Friday A Bit Grey
Queens NY / November 28, 2008. Black Friday didn't look so black based on our reports from various sections of the borough. We toured four primary shopping areas on Friday: 1) Sunnyside, 2) Jackson Heights, 3) Forest Hills and 4) Jamaica.
Friday was actually a perfect shopping day, with highs in the low fifties, sunny and dry. Many people were out shopping, but not more than one would expect on a normal Saturday. Many folks in Queens don't have the day off, which in part accounts for the results of our survey. In fact compared to last year which was a reasonably good shopping season, there only appeared to be slightly fewer shoppers overall. Where we noted the real difference, however, was in the numbers of packages and bags that people were carrying, as largely we didn't see much of this at all.
We started in Sunnyside along Queens Blvd in the streets numbering in the forties in the mid afternoon. Click this link to see a map of the Sunnyside Shopping district. As noted and which you can see in the photo, people were out and about on the streets, just not carrying the holiday packages and shopping bags you would expect to see.
So we started off toward Jackson Heights, and surveyed the shopping area in and around 82nd Street and up along 37th Avenue. Click this link to see a map of the Jackson Heights shopping district. Again, while a few people were carrying packages and bags, it wasn't enmasse. So off the Forest Hills we went to see if this was a borough-wide phenomenon.
In Forest Hills we surveyed the shopping area in and around 71st / Continental Street and Austin. Here we again found a normal level of business activity, and again with some bags in hand, but nothing we could note that was out of the ordinary. Click this link to see a map of the Forest Hills Shopping district.
We finished our survey late in the afternoon, along Jamaica Avenue in the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens. And here we found what we'd seen throughout the day - a reasonable level of commercial / shopping activity, but nothing one would consider to have the hustle bustle of the holiday season. Click here to see a map of the shopping district in Jamaica Queens NY.
Our conclusion is that this is either going to be a last minute shopping holiday season, or it's going to be a slow one. Click this link to view a follow on story, covering shopping at the Queens Mall in Elmhurst, Vernon Blvd in Long Island City, Steinway Street in Astoria and the Shops At Atlas Park in Glendale.
Queens offers a wide selection of shopping venues, which are far less expensive and far less crowded than in Manhattan or Long Island. And the service is generally friendlier and the restaurants provide authentic ethnic cuisines at great prices vis a vis Manhattan or Long Island restaurants. Public transportation to and from Queens in the areas we cover is very good with respect to subways to and from Manhattan, and trains to and from Long Island. Highway transportation is also very good to and from both Manhattan and Long Island, but like the rest of the metro area, congested. Click here for a map of the Steinway Street Astoria Shopping District. Click here for the Queens Blvd Shopping District in Sunnyside Queens NYC. Click here for a map of the shopping district in the Jackson Heights neighborhood of Queens NYC. Click here for a map of the shopping district in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Queens NYC. Click here for a map of the shopping district in the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens NYC. Click here for a map of the shopping district in the Long Island City neighborhood of Queens NYC. More will be posted on shopping throughout the Thanksgiving Day Weekend, including adding maps of the shopping districts in Woodside along Roosevelt and Corona along Northern Blvd and the Queens Mall.