Holiday shopping on BI more like usual this year

Heavy rains were not enough to deter locals and tourists from shopping on Black Friday and Shop Small Saturday on Bainbridge Island.

Heather Jaynes, owner of Hidden Gem, a specialty shop in the Winslow Mall, said business was good. It certainly had to be better than last year when COVID-19 restrictions hurt local businesses.

“We were really busy. Everyone was in a really good mood and were very excited to be back in the stores. People were definitely happy to be out and about, and I noticed a lot of tourists. Our tourist season has seemed to have extended a bit.”

Jaynes said last Friday business was good, but Saturday outpaced it. “Small Business Saturday was exciting for us. We felt like we were getting the local support that we depend on so much.”

Customer Susan Neal said she was “drawn” to Hidden Gem, and she was taking her time discovering new stones that might resonate with the energy in her life right now.

Jane Pomeroy, owner of The Berry Patch for 51 years in Winslow, said the community has been supporting small, local businesses. She said it’s too early to tell what the Christmas season will bring, but mentioned that Thanksgiving shopping was slow to start but noticed that customers purchased more roasting pans, turkey basters and sheet pans this year.

With her long history here, Pomeroy said weather impacts shopping, and she has the historical records to prove it. She said that if the day after Thanksgiving is rainy, people take their out-of-town guests and shop the island. But, if it’s a nice day, they go to Silverdale. It was raining last Friday, and Pomeroy was finding the trend to be holding true.

Zev Whitehead is co-owner of Zutto Vintage & Antiques, which opened in September 2020. He said his business has experienced a couple of months of ups and downs. “It kind of fluctuates with the news that comes out with any COVID updates and what not.”

Whitehead is a woodworker and has refinished many furniture pieces for sale in the store. He’s optimistic this holiday season will be better than 2020 and hopes to start offering furniture, repair and customization of modern furniture with a vintage style.

Dana’s Showhouse on Winslow Way experienced a busy last weekend. Owner Terri Bryant said, “We were very busy Friday and Saturday, and there were quite a few people here for the tree lighting.” She noticed that “People were very upbeat and happy traveling around town with their family and chatting with all the neighbors. This is the first year that some of us were out shopping during the holiday season and happy to be out bumping into neighbors.”

Bryant said Sunday was quiet, but did see lots of traffic for the first two days of Hanukkah.

At the end of the day in Pleasant Beach Village, general manager Joe Raymond and Josh Sluys, the director of facilities, and staff were hurriedly putting the finishing touches on a new outdoor synthetic skating rink, which was opening later that evening. The new attraction will be open for several months this winter.

Raymond said Pleasant Beach Village wanted to do something special this year, like the carousel set up for the holidays a couple of years ago. “It was a big hit.”

This year, they wanted to offer something that was for kids and families and something that wasn’t really anywhere else. “There’s no other place to skate in the area, so that was the idea. Then we just worked on it all year to try to figure out the best placement for it and how to do it.”

The 40-foot by 88-foot outdoor skating rink will be open each Wednesday through Sunday and will accommodate 40 people at a time.

“I think people really want something like this. Life has been stressful. And reopenings have been really stressful. So, for the team to be doing something totally new like this, it has been really special to see everybody make this happen in a couple of weeks.”

Two visitors viewing the Bygones art exhibition of paintings by Julie Read and assemblage by Steve Parmelee at the Bainbridge Arts and Crafts gallery at 151 Winslow Way E. Nancy Treder/Bainbridge Island Review photos
Berry Patch owner Jane Pomeroy unboxes items for her kitchen store that has been in business for 51 years.
Pleasant Beach Village general manager Joe Raymond and Josh Sluys, director of facilities, making the final checks on the new skating rink before it opened to the public Nov. 26. The new facility is a synthetic ice skating rink that will be open through the winter months.
Katia Buskrik, owner of Z Bones Pet Merchantile in Winslow, holds an example of the toys customers are buying for their pets this year.
Zev Whitehead, co-owner of Zutto Vintage & Antiques located at 164 Bjune Dr SE in Winslow, readies a motion-controlled Santa to greet visitors at the store entrance.
Shoppers out early on Black Friday.
Visitors walking along Winslow Way.
Visitors out on Shop Small Saturday in Winslow.
Santa's mailbox at the Inn at Pleasant Beach.