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Lakewood toy store enjoys many Black Friday shoppers ahead of Small Business Saturday

Posted at 9:57 AM, Nov 26, 2022

It may be Black Friday, but for Apple Jax Toys in Lakewood, it’s a preview for a bigger day. While the Friday after Thanksgiving is synonymous with doorbuster deals at big box retailers, some holiday shoppers are getting their Small Business Saturday shopping in early.

“Well usually on Black Friday, the week leading up to Thanksgiving, we’re getting in shipments of new toys, but starting on Black Friday is when we start to focus on putting out some of the older, vintage toys that we’ve been buying throughout the year,” said Allen Singleton, co-owner oif Apple Jax Toys.

At Apple Jax Toys, a little love goes a long way. There are the toys that will soon hit the shelves alongside toys from every era, and for customers like Claire Macosko, it’s like a trip through time.

“It was just like a huge time warp from seeing the lava lamps to beanie babies to GI Joes, you know?” she said.

Macsko wasn’t alone — many chose to shop small a little earlier this year.

“They need something to do the day after Thanksgiving,” Singleton said. “Ate a big meal, watch a lot of football, they come and check out our stores. It's usually a good day for that, for Black Friday.”

“I prefer going to small businesses vs. bigger chains,” said shopper Gail Monte. “Smaller businesses — it gives back to the people instead of bigger chains.”

At Apple Jax Toys, there are plenty of things to buy that you’ll be hard-pressed to find elsewhere, which makes this time of year so important to them.

“This time of year is crucial for any store like ours for us to do well,” Singleton said. “There'll be things that we know that people are looking for that live here in Lakewood, Ohio that maybe a big box store doesn't necessarily have, or we have older items that big box stores definitely don’t have.”

Black Friday this year was just a taste of what the business expects this weekend.

“Tomorrow is Small Business Saturday, and that's when we really are crowded, Singleton said. “It's one of our best days of the year, and rightfully so. A lot of people come and support us and it's a really important day for us.”

It’s a day for people in town to travel through time and enjoy a change of pace from the normal shopping experience.

Just something that’s so unique from, like I said an Apple Jax kind of time warp, to even just going to unique antique [stores] that are on the road, you really see a lot of that in the Lakewood area,” Mocoski said. “Just really able to see this kind of stuff, and it’s really starting to grow, and it’s really cool — I love it.”

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