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Belk santafest to spread holiday cheer

Belk santafest to spread holiday cheer

ATLANTA -- Belk department stores will host their first-ever santafest holiday celebration on Saturday, Dec. 1.

All santafests will be held from noon to 3 p.m.

Highlights include crafts, family-friend activities, Christmas treats and, of course, the chance to meet Santa Claus. Participants can enter a drawing to win a $50 kids wardrobe; three winners will be chosen from each Belk store.

Visit belk.com for more information and to find your nearest store.

Anna's Linens to open at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving

Anna's Linens to open at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving

ATLANTA -- Anna's Linens has joined a growing list of stores that plan to open on Thanksgiving night to give ambitious Black Friday shoppers a head start.

Nearly all Anna's stores will open at 10 p.m. Nov. 22 with doorbuster deals.

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"This move allows us to attract a greater number of shoppers, but also gives Black Friday customers the convenience to shop our stores while hitting the nearby big-box retailers a few hours later," Anna's CEO Alan Gladstone said in a statement.

"We intended to follow suit and open at midnight, but decided opening earlier was a better move to create a more opportune Black Friday shopping experience," Gladstone added.

Belk donates $100K to Sandy relief

Belk donates $100K to Sandy relief

ATLANTA -- Belk Inc., operator of Belk department stores, has committed $100,000 to the American Red Cross to help the victims of Superstorm Sandy.

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"Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of those who suffered and continue to struggle as a result of this devastating storm," Belk Inc. chairman and CEO Tim Belk said in a statement. "The American Red Cross is at the forefront of disaster relief efforts, providing much-needed resources and support to those who lives have been impacted by the storm."

Belk's contribution will support efforts both in New York and throughout the company's footprint.

There are several Belk locations throughout metro Atlanta. Visit belk.com to find your closest store.

Sam's Club offering free diabetes screenings

Sam's Club offering free diabetes screenings

ATLANTA -- Several Sam's Club Pharmacy locations throughout metro Atlanta will offer free diabetes and vision screenings this weekend.

The screenings will be held Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and are valued at more than $150. They include glucose, A1C, vision, blood pressure and BMI tests.

"Knowing the links between risk factors, choices and solutions prepares our members to better manage or even prevent diabetes," Sam's Club Health and Wellness senior VP Jill Turner-Mitchael said in a statement.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say about 1.9 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed every year. If this trend continues, one out of every three U.S. adults will have diabetes by 2050.

Diabetes is also the leading cause of new cases of blindness in U.S. adults, according to the CDC.

Participating Sam's Club locations include:

10600 Davis Drive

2901 Clairmont Road

Whole Foods, Ticket Alternative partner up

Whole Foods, Ticket Alternative partner up

ATLANTA -- Whole Foods is making it easier than ever for customers to score tickets to their favorite events.

All eight metro Atlanta Whole Foods and Harry's Farmers Market locations are now outlets for Ticket Alternative. That means the grocery stores will sell tickets to events at some of the area's most popular venues, including the Fox Theatre, Eddie's Attic and the Frederick Brown Jr. Amphitheater.

"Ticket Alternative's team members know our city, our community and our building," Allan Vella, general manger of the Fox Theatre, said in a statement. "They are able to answer our patrons' questions with first-hand knowledge and are the perfect fit to support our ticketing operations."

This coming weekend, Whole Foods will give away tickets to several upcoming events, including Taste of Atlanta, the Atlanta Botanical Garden and Two Drink Minimum at Theatrical Outfit.

Walmart layaway is back, better this year

Walmart layaway is back, better this year

ATLANTA -- The Walmart layaway program will return just in time for Christmas, the company announced Monday.

This year's layaway will have plenty of new features, including more eligible items and a $15 Walmart gift card for those who pay for their entire layaway purchase.

Layaway begins on Sept. 16. Customers who like their local Walmart stores on Facebook beginning Aug. 28 will be able to start their layaway early, on Sept. 14.

Learn more about the program at walmart.com/layaway.

Georgia resumes annual Back-to-School tax free holiday

Georgia resumes annual Back-to-School tax free holiday

ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia is offering parents a tax holiday on back-to-school goods for the first time since 2009.

The state will temporarily suspend its collection of the sales tax on Aug. 10-11 for general school supplies, some clothing and computers and computer accessories.