New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 27, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
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Page 6A — Herald-Zeitung — Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Shoppers search the Christmas decorations area at Target while looking for clearance bargains Monday.SHOPPING
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After-Christmas sales attract many shoppers
More and more, Kveton said, retailers were seeing the week after Christmas become a profitable one — particularly with a growing trend toward use of gift cards to take advantage of post-holiday values.
Target sales associates began work at 2 a.m. Monday, Kveton said, making sure the store was ready.
“We have all of our seasonal merchandise marked down and we’re excited,” he said. “We have a lot of Christmas clearance items marked way down for our guests.”
Monday, Kveton said, was as busy for his store as was Christmas Eve.
“We’ll stay busy through this week, and then it will start to slow down some,” he said. “And now, we’re at the point where we’re starting to put our spring stuff out.”
It was no less busy across Interstate 35 at the New Braunfels Wal-Mart.
Manager John Luensmann said he didn’t know how many shoppers were using gift cards.
“I haven’t been at the front end of the store,” Luensmann said. “But it’s going pretty good!”
Returns, he said were about typical for the day.
Armed with gift cards and a zeal for bargains, shoppers like
Sanders and the Bueches returned to the nation’s malls and stores Monday for a second round of the holiday shopping season as retailers hoped for a post-Christmas sales blitz.
Many stores — stymied by shoppers procrastinating even longer than last year — are relying even more on the postholiday business to meet their modest sales goals and wooed customers with deeper discounts, expanded shopping hours and fresh regular price merchandise.
They're largely aiming their efforts at the growing numbers of gift card holders who are expected to spend their newfound money more generously. Gift cards are recorded as sales only when they’re redeemed.
According to ShopperTtak RCT Corp., the week after Christmas accounted for IO percent of holiday sales last year, but analysts expect that period could account for as much as 14 percent this year, given gift cards’ soaring popularity.
But in New Braunfels, Lindsay Bueche and her brother, Ryan, 12, didn’t think about how busy the store was.
Ryan, who got most everything he wanted for Christmas, was looking for a phone case.
Lindsay and her mom worked to decide which model of karoake machine they would buy.
“Her brothers have to hear her sing,” Betty said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report
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Criminals look at trash to find victims
with your trash. So do criminals.”
Kolbe said a big empty computer box or stereo box left out with the trash while you’re away or at work is an open invitation for a thief to visit.
“Cut the boxes up and fold them flat,” Kolbe said. “Bring the cardboard to a recycling center or dispose of the boxes in a way that crooks don’t know what you’ve got.”
Whatever you do, don’t leave them out at the curb while you’re at work, telling a prospective burglar where he needs to go if he wants to watch next year’s Super Bowl or Daytona 500 on a big screen, high definition TV.
New Braunfels police Det. Bob Parchman said commonsense steps can help keep you from becoming a crime victim.
“It’s really the same things you should do always,” Parchman said. “Make sure things are locked up — and not left in plain sight. Most property crime is a crime of opportunity where a suspect sees something and takes the opportunity to steal it because the owners are not paying attention.”
A department store parking lot can be a major area for crime during the holidays — particularly during the
Law enforcement officials say putting boxes for televisions and other big-ticket Christmas gifts could serve to attract criminals.
dark hours and even this week when stores are full of customers making gift card purchases or trading in items, Parchman said.
“I would park in a well-lit area — it doesn’t hurt to wait for a space to open up — where there are plenty of other people,” Parchman said. “Be sure to lock your vehicle and don’t leave anything valuable — a purse, cell phone or laptop computer — where it can be seen.”
The vast majority of vehicle burglaries, Parchman said, happen to unlocked cars.
“But a thief will do a ‘smash-and-grab’ if he sees something in a car to make it worth it," Parchman said.
Be aware too, that once inside the store, not everyone else is a shopper. Some peo
ple are looking for things to steal. And by far, one of the most inviting targets is a purse left in a shopping cart while a woman goes around a comer or is looking at some item. Each year, New Braunfels alone has dozens of these cases.
“When you're shopping, it’s easy to get distracted looking
at labels and reading things,” Parchman said. “Within seconds, your purse can be stolen and within an hour your credit cards will be maxed out.”
If someone is following you around the store or does something else that makes you feel uncomfortable with leaving, go to the manager and ask to be escorted to your car or ask for a police officer to be called, Parchman said.
If, when you’re driving home, someone seems to be following you, go to a police station or wave, honk or flash an officer down. Do not lead a suspicious stranger to where you live, he said.
Be sure, also, that you don’t open the door to strangers, Parchman said. Doors should be deadbolted and install peepholes if you don’t have diem. Also deadbolt chains are a good safety device, he said.
“Most of these ideas are really good for the year around,” Parchman said.
“Just because the Grinch did not stop in on Christmas Eve doesn’t mean you don’t have to worry about him."
Dr. John Horan’s
new office will be open effective January 3rd,2006
652 N. Houston, #2 New Braunfels, Texas 78130 Phone (830) 625-0009
The office will be closed from December 26-30th for the move.
lf you have appointments scheduled, please call ahead for directions. Thank you for understanding during this change, jg