Stores gear up for big shopping weekend

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

DOTHAN, AL (WSFA) - Back to school shoppers will be hitting the streets August 7th-9th for the state's annual tax free holiday, and businesses are preparing for a huge influx of customers.

You could call it the Black Friday of summer.  Many stores say this will be our biggest weekend.

C.L Moulton, Assistant Manager at Eagle Eye Outfitters in town says they see folks from other counties, even Florida and Georgia.

It's something called "outshopping" and it refers to folks who are crossing county, even state lines to cash in on the deals.  And Houston County ranks number 1 in the state.

Houston County Commission Chairman Mark Culver says, "Our community is dependent on retail, and we have a lot of new developments being talked about.  It's because everybody from about a 40 miles radius comes into Dothan to shop."

And since Dothan City Schools are requiring school uniforms for the first time, locally owned Dothan School Uniforms knows they'll be busy.

For folks willing to face the crowds , the savings can be pretty significant.  Take a pair of pants for instance.  They are $22 with tax on a normal day.  But, this weekend, they are only $12 dollars.  That's a savings of $10 on just one pair of pants.

Many shoppers say, they're scouting out the deals early, and they'll come back this weekend to make their purchases.

And even with shrinking budgets across the board, county leaders hope extra expenditures this weekend outweigh the loss of tax revenues.

Culver says that everybody that goes out on that day, doesn't just go out and buy school clothes  and go home.

They also buy the other things they need.

And during a time when shoppers and*retailers need a boost, a big sales weekend couldn't come at a better time.

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