The initiative, intended as the mom-and-pop answer to mega-chains' Black Friday and e-tailers' Cyber Monday, will offer discounts across the borough — likely without Friday's crush. Plus, shoppers will be helping local stores, providing a much-appreciated boost as the economy continues to drag.
To help encourage local shopping, American Express cardholders who register here now will get a one-time $25 credit when they make a purchase of $25 or more at any independently owned, small business across the city on Saturday. A partial list of eligible shops is available here.
But even without an Amex card, savings await. Here are some of the best buys in your neighborhood, including discounts and freebies (compiled with the assistance of PAPER magazine's official guide):
Greenwich Village & SoHo:
Screaming Mimi's, which caters to "fashionistas with a passion for contemporary, off-the-runway style," with funky vintage clothing and accessories, will offer a special holiday gift bag of “nostalgia candy” with a purchase of $25 or more, staff said. 382 Lafayette St., 212-677-6464.
McNally Jackson Books, an indie bookstore in Nolita with two floors of books as well as "obscure art and literary journals" and an adjoining café, is offering 20 percent off all merchandise on Saturday. 52 Prince St., 212-274-1160.
Palmer Trading Company, which specializes in classic, high-end menswear, including vintage antique Rolex watches and leather belts, Oak Street Bootmaker shoes, socks from Marc Cabot and customized Pelkey moccasins, will offer shoppers free home-brewed New England Apple Cider, treats from Rabbits Café, an acoustic guitar performance and 25 percent off all hand-made bags, belts and ragwool socks. 137 Sullivan St., 646-360-4557.
Lower East Side & East Village:
The Dressing Room, a hybrid boutique bar on Orchard Street, which caters to "weary shoppers
in need of a cocktail while trying to zip up a vintage gown" is offering 15 percent off of items from its clothing exchange as well as a free drink voucher with any purchase of $75 or more. 75A Orchard St., 212-966-7330.
Babycakes, the vegan bakery founded by former fashion stylist Erin McKenna, will be offering 20 percent off of all baked goods, including gluten-free, agave-sweetened cupcakes, donuts, cakes, cookies and breads. 248 Broome St., 212-677-5047.
By Robert James, which specializes in tailored button-downs, suits and vintage accessories, is offering $40 off of any full-priced button-down shirt as well as complimentary hot toddies for shoppers Saturday. 74 Orchard St., 212-253-2121.
Cloak & Dagger, a unique boutique, which sells the vintage-esque Cloak & Dagger line, C&D, Karen Walker eyewear amd Bing Bang accessories, is offering 15 percent off purchases of $200 or more as well as complimentary wine and tea from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., staff said. 441 E. 9th St., 212-673-0500.
The event will include demonstrations from local businesses, including Sweet Lily Natural Nail Spa and Arc Athletics, as well as face painting, a "Letters to Santa" station, raffles for gift cards and other items and live music from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., organizers said.
Tribeca Treats, a specialty bakery offering a wide variety of chocolates, cookies, cupcakes and cakes, will give customers who spend more than $40 on Saturday a free hot chocolate. 94 Reade St., 212-571-0500.
Torly Kid boutique, which offers "boys and girls clothing with a downtown NYC flair," is offering a $20 credit to customers who spend $100 or more on Saturday. 51 Hudson St., 212-406-74440.
Ear Inn in Tribeca, which touts itself as the oldest drinking establishment in New York City, is offering a buy one, get one free drink deal through the day Saturday, its owner said. 326 Spring St., 212-431-9750.
Chamber Street Wines, which stocks bottles exclusively from small, artisanal producers specializing in the Loire Valley, Burgundy and the Rhone regions, will offer a special, free wine tasting from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. in honor of the day, staff said. 148 Chambers St., 212-227-1434.
In addition, Sweet Lily Natural Nail Spa, 222 W. Broadway, will offer discounted manicures; Boomerang Toys, 119 W. Broadway, will host a competition for kids to win a scooter; ARC Athletics, 5 Harrison St., will offer complimentary injury screening; and Weather Up, 159 Duane St., will sell all of its cocktails for $11.
Murray Hill and Gramercy:
Rothman's, the independent men’s store which has been a staple in Union Square for over 25 years, is offering 20 percent off of all purchases Saturday, staff said. 200 Park Ave. South, 212-777-7400.
Tonnie's Minis bakery, which specializes in signature mini cupcakes will offer two full-sized cupcakes, in flavors including chocolate, red velvet and golden sponge, for $4. 264 Lenox Ave., 212-831-5292.
Inwood & Washington Heights:
Azul Salon is offering free deep conditioner with every wash and dry service, 10 percent off manicures and pedicures and 15 percent off all waxing services. 4260 Broadway, 646-559-5126.
Officials say they hope the events and deals will help boost sales at local businesses, which employ about half of private sector workers, according to the Small Business Administration.
"This Thanksgiving weekend, let's give thanks to all our local, independent small businesses by shopping on Small Business Saturday!" Rep. Carolyn Maloney said in a statement, noting that small businesses have created nearly two-thirds of all new jobs over the course of the past decade.
According to the American Express OPEN Independent Retail Index, independent retailers in the city saw their market share drop from 83 percent to 76 percent between 1990 and 2009.