The annual Boothbay Harbor Men’s Night could hardly be called just an evening affair as shoppers hit the shelves and racks all day for last minute gifts. By the time evening rolled around, but for a few groups and the occasional straggler, traffic in and out of shops lowered to a steady trickle with an impending snowstorm on everyone’s mind.
Two Salty Dogs owner Don Kingsbury said foot and paw traffic was good in the store, but the online sales were also a success. “This year with both Early Bird and Men's Night, I've just been hammering (online deals) over and over to people on the newsletter and it's been paying off. See, this guy here: $241 of catnip toys, at 25% off, going to League City, Texas wherever that is.”
Janson’s Clothing Store owner Betty Maddocks guarded the door of her establishment to ensure the room stayed at a five-person maximum capacity. “We've been going all day, we run our sale all day because it's easier that way. It's been pretty busy. It feels like we've wrapped 5,000 presents.”
Sweet bay’s Ken Rayle said he was planning to close at 5 p.m. out of habit before a friend asked if he would be open for Men’s Night. “I’d nearly forgotten, but we figured stay open because – well, because it’s Men’s Night, of course.”
Windjammer Emporium’s Kathrine Norcott and Dianne Gimbel said the day had steady foot traffic and shoppers seemed mostly done by sunset. Business on the day was good after such a crazy and worrisome year, said Norcott.
Norcott said the year was scary at the start due to the unknowns of COVID-19, but August, September and October were spectacular due to cooperative vigilance of health and safety protocols – which also made for a pleasant Men’s Night. “People reached a place where they needed a healthy sense of norm and as long as we all did our part, we were able to enjoy that. It was great.”