The perfect media tactics to boost business and encourage OU students to shop local

Disclaimer: I am not a professional. All comments come from my personal experiences and observations, and this blog is purely for academic purposes.

Need fresh ideas for reaching a broader audience? Are you interested in the digital strategies and media tactics that could help drive business and encourage Ohio University students to take a stop in your store? Here’s a look at the social media techniques used by several clothing boutiques in Athens. The best part is these strategies can also be applied to a variety of businesses including restaurants,dining, bookstores and specialization stores such as gift shops, craft stores and costume shops.

When thinking of the stores on and surrounding Court Street, there’s a variety of customers and owners. Many would believe each store takes a completely different approach to reach their target audience. Surprisingly, this is far fetched.

After extensive research and vast increments of my time being used to creep through the shops social media, I was surprised to find most of the strategies used by the local owners were extremely similar. The strategies that many stores use often seem to be working well, and unfortunately the mistakes and painful errors were frequently used across the board. Let’s take a look at the good, the bad and the ugly digital promotion approaches used by many local Athens shops.

Artifacts Gallery

Artifacts Gallery is a local clothing shop located at 2 W. State Street., Athens, OH. This store uses Instagram and Facebook as their strongest social media pages. Some techniques used on the Instagram page included using a white background when taking photos of the apparel. Using a white background, or sticking with a common theme, is useful because people enjoy images that are pleasant to the eye.

Facebook is also used by keeping active with posts that do not only relate to their store and products. Using a personalized approach and occasional videos help keep interest in followers, causing them to be more engaged when looking at a media post.

Unfortunately, Artifacts Gallery could use some work on their Twitter page. Twitter is accessible and sharable, but that is not how it is used. Instead, the tweets only link to Instagram posts, and their customer interaction to assist with product feedback or other related questions. Also, the Instagram could afford to involve a few models when marketing their t-shirts and other apparel. Having a real person involved in media posts allows customers, and especially college students, to be more engaged.

The only issue that struck me hard when viewing Artifacts Gallery’s social media pages was the excessive hashtagging. Yes, I understand many people were told to use hashtags to draw in more likes and assist in SEO, but sometimes less is more. My best advice is to use hashtags appropriately and understand that quality really can mean more than quantity.

Bluetique

This trendy local shop focuses on targeting the typical college girl who wishes she was in walking distance to a mall. Bluetique is located 19 W. State Street., Athens, OH. Bluetique does an excellent job promoting their store through a strong social media presence. Their social media is a triple-threat, and maybe more. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are all used constantly and appropriately to reach a variety of customers in the Athens area. Bluetique is also one of the few local shops that has started using Pinterest, which is very smart since many Ohio University women have joined on the Pinterest bandwagon when collaborating ideas.

There’s no doubt that Bluetique thought about the social media tactics they wanted to use. Overall, their pages are professional and engaging. Gabby Summers, a Bluetique employee, said students and workers are often used to pose in their clothes and accessories because it helps make the posts more personal and attracts a larger audience. All Instagram posts are similar because they use a theme and specific lighting location in the store. The owner has also invested in a wallpaper like background that looks like a wooden floor to assist in making the products stand out and keep a professional theme.

New floral two piece! We love our new arrivals! #bluetiqueathens #shopbluetique #newarrivals

A post shared by Bluetique Athens (@bluetiqueathens) on

Instagram and Twitter are also used to promote sales and positions for hire. The Bluetique Facebook page is a strong presence because they share events and other posts on their page to engage with customers. More frequent tweets would help them reach a wider audience. Videos and a cover photo with girls from Ohio University in their clothing gives the site a more personal approach, which is excellent when trying to find new customers and grow as a shop in a college town.

Although they use similar content among all platforms, especially  by reusing Instagram photos, the Bluetique social media techniques are definitely appropriate for most local business. Their techniques drive business and gain OU students as loyal customers.

Figleaf Boutique

Figleaf Boutique is a company that can be found in several college orientated towns, such as Kent, Columbus and Athens. The Athens location can be found at 57 N. Court Street., Athens, OH. Due to the larger presence this boutique has in other cities, their social media techniques are also updated and frequently used to reach OU students.

Figleaf is smart by using Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter in creative ways. All their sites maintain a professional setting, and the links on Instagram photos, Pinterest pins, tweets and Facebook posts are directly to their official website. This is extremely important because it increases availability and sales. Many college students, and specifically OU students, don’t like feeling rushed if they can’t make it to the local shops during their daily hours. Having a website that is promoted daily through social media is an excellent technique which could potentially benefit all local shops.

It’s also apparent that Figleaf knows and understands their target audience which is the trendy college girl. They understand how to reach girls needing dresses and accessories for date parties and other social events through all medias. The also reach the parents of many OU girls whose parents are on the lookout for trends and sales on Facebook. Their Facebook content is slightly altered to engage a different group, which is smart since their Facebook audience has relations with their target audience.

The best advice for Figleaf Boutique is to be more interactive on Twitter with customers and keep the variety between their different media sites because it does make a huge difference.

Honey

This lingerie store is located at 13 W. Union Street, Athens, OH. Truthfully visiting the store is the best way to have any idea about their apparel and products. Honey lacks much of any social media presence. They have very few followers across the board, and they have few posts.

Honey’s Instagram has not posted since December, which is poor for almost any company in 2017. This is extremely disappointing since they are targeting OU students, who more often than not use Instagram daily. In fact, according to a Pew Research Center study, 90 percent of American adults aged 18 to 29 use social media. As a local shop targeting this specific group, it’s best they amp up their social media presence and begin to focus on the successful tactics available to boost business.

However, the one good thing Honey does with their social media is their use of Facebook. There are several more posts and more interaction on their Facebook page, and they even post links and articles to other sources. Outside sourcing to relatable content is a fantastic marketing tactic that many small, local businesses are afraid to test. Although this is very different than other trends among local shops in Athens, this out of ordinary social media technique would be worth a shot for other stores. Many stores and websites appreciate interaction from one another, and promoting a different store potentially brings new customers if the favor is returned.

The Other Place

The Other Place is another trendy store focusing on women’s clothing, accessories and gift items. This boutique can be found at 43 S. Court Street, Athens, OH. This college town shop engages with OU students on a variety of platforms, including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. The owner has recently teamed up with the Scripps’ Impressions team, which has developed a few new techniques to boost business and student interaction among social media.

The Other Place is beginning to use real OU students to model their apparel in hopes to promote a real life experience and receive more engagement from friends and family members of the girls featured in the photos and posts. Another exciting social media tactic is the startup of a WordPress site to allow blogs about trends and styles that can be created from the apparel and accessories in the store.

Show off those shoulders with one of our super cute rompers! #rompers #shoulders

A post shared by The Other Place Athens (@theotherplaceathens) on

Other social media ideas that are common and effective include using Twitter constantly and posting promotional sales and hirings on their sites. When linking, it could be more effective to link to a store site, but instead they link back to their Facebook. This technique could be useful in reaching a different group of OU students, but there’s limited interaction on the Facebook page. Limited feedback and limited posting on both Facebook and Twitter may be the cause for the lack of followers, or vice versa.

10 West Clothing Co.

The new local shop, 10 West Clothing Co. is located at 10 W. Union Street., Athens, OH, and the store is known for selling new and nearly new name brand clothes. Their store specializes in making trendy clothes affordable for the college students in Athens.

As any new store in the area would do, they post quite often in order to gain followers, likes and attention in general. They use Instagram as their best social media platform by posting photos of their clothes, information about sales and funny memes in order to give it a personal feel. Unfortunately, their photography skills could still use some assistance to stand out and be more appealing to customers.

Another bad habit constantly used on their social media pages includes linking directly to Instagram only. Their interaction with customers and the shop’s creativity spreading content is lacking. A few alterations and more variety on all platforms would make a huge difference and advance 10 W. Clothing Co.’s business and appeal to OU students.

In conclusion, local businesses shouldn’t be afraid to try new things, such as promotional events or blogs. Using OU students for modeling clothes, or holding events, engages other students, friends and family increasing publicity and social media awareness. Ohio University faculty could also be a wise partner for events and social media promotion because they carry respect and people have a tendency to shop at local places if they have heard good reviews from people they personally know.

Spreading content creatively and using all media platforms allows local business to reach their max audience and customers. Sometimes, different platforms require, or strive, from a different form of media. Balancing videos, photos and text increasing attention for OU students interested in the local stores because millennials expect businesses to be up-to-date and use social media in a multitude of ways. Also, owners should not be afraid to dip their feet in and try using more than Facebook. Learning how to tweet and pin information is very important to a successful media platform because Twitter and Pinterest are the most shareable content sites.

Finally, keeping a professional look to all platforms makes a huge difference. Photography skills matter. Good lighting, backgrounds, using models instead of mannequins and keeping a constant theme makes a huge difference. Frequent posts are most effective when they are put together and consistent. Keeping digital media in correlation with college students’ expectations allows businesses to increase sales and encourages OU students to shop at the local stores around Athens.

When you’re broke and have no where to go, Court Street is the place to shop

Let’s face it, being a college student well sucks…especially when you’re in the middle of nowhere and the nearest “mall” has about three stores.

But WAIT!

I was only exaggerating.

Don’t lose hope just yet, Court Street has plenty of places to shop and it ranges from small novelty stores to stores where you can purchase certain items we weren’t allowed to film.

Uptown Costumes, the name says it all. You’ll be able to find a large variety of not only costumes but also sweaters and posters. If you’re lucky enough you might run into Charlie, the owner’s dog. Be gentle, he’s an old boy.

Import House is a split into two sections, one side where you can take your parents other side where your mom questions whether or not she actually believes you’re using the money she gave you last month for textbooks. (It’s okay, your parents did the same thing in college.)

Artifacts has a lot of novelty items along with dresses and t-shirts. You’ll be able to find left-handed mugs for your obnoxious left-handed friend (me) and other handmade knick-knacks.

“I usually shop on Court Street after I get breakfast to cure my hangover. It’s a nice way to spend whatever is left of my afternoon,” said a student on Court Street who didn’t want their name used in case their parents were to ever Google them.

Join me as I dragged my boyfriend and a close friend around Court Street to look at things I don’t have room for but will sooner or later end up buying.

6 Fashion trends from the 2000s that are making a comeback

When I think back on being a kid and pre-teen in the early 2000s, it’s hard not to reminisce about shows such as “Lizzie McGuire,” “Zoey 101” and “One Tree Hill,” or movies like “Bring It On,” “Love Don’t Cost a Thing,” and “Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen”. I nearly strain myself trying to suppress the urge to hum the tune of my favorite Ashanti song, or break out in the choreographed dances me and my cousin would make to the latest “106 & Park” videos. I can still remember the days when putting on my purple, velvet Velour tracksuit, Coach high tops, and watermelon flavored Lip Smacker lip gloss, made me feel like I was the trendiest girl in school.

But alas, those days are behind us all. The era of “peasant” tops, studded belts, gaucho pants, and ponchos, is dead– or is it? Although my style has evolved since those formative years, I must admit that there are some trends from the 2000s that are making an emergence in the fashion industry. Who knew that a period when airbrushed t-shirts were popular, would make a comeback.

Below are are 10 trends from the 2000s that are becoming increasingly popular.

1. Chokers

clip_image002 (sarina-rose.deviantart.com via Google)

These ’90s and ’00s accessories are the perfect accent for any grunge outfit. From the thick, velvet bands to the whimsical tattoo inspired neck pieces, chokers are on trend in 2016.

2. Trucker Hats

clip_image004(Flickr, Kris Krüg)

This throwback trend was worn by celebrities, such as Ashton Kutcher, Britney Spears, and Paris Hilton, back in the 2000s. Now it’s back for another ride.

3. Tracksuits

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Tracksuits– either you love them or you hate them, or you love them because they’re hated, but there’s no denying that they are in again.

4. Crop Tops

clip_image008(Flickr, Bob Suir)

During the summer months, it’s hard to go anywhere without seeing someone in a crop top. You can thank the 2000s for that, and pretty much every decade before it. Crop tops have always been in fashion, and they probably always will be.

5. Denim Skirts

clip_image010(Vimeo.com, via Google Images)

Like crop tops, denim skirts have been in fashion every decade since the 1970s. There is really no escaping it.

6. Puffer Jackets

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Remember the days when we were forced to wear puffer coats in the winter, because our mom or dad said it was too cold to go without it. Who knew our parents were trend forecasters?

Women’s Fashion in Athens: A guide to looking good at OU while not giving a sh*t about what people think of you

HIGH SCHOOL VS. COLLEGE

Ah…high school. Strategically planning your outfits the night before a full day of school as if your life depended on it seems to have been a common occurrence among teenagers. In college, nobody gives a sh*t about what you wear. I’m telling you right now to stop stressing. If you need some helpful fashion tips, keep reading.

The following information includes the general fashion trends. Do not limit yourself to these. Wear whatever you want. Be happy, comfortable, confident, and express yourself… even if it means wearing a banana suit!

WHERE TO SHOP

Amazon Prime. As a college student, you are eligible for a free 6-month trial of Amazon Prime. This will give you free two-day shipping, access to hundreds of free movies and TV shows, and access to hundreds of playlists through Prime Music. It’s awesome. After your 6-month trial is up, you get Amazon Prime for 50% off ($40 a year, so worth it). Click here to sign up! 

Court Street. Fig Leaf and The Other Place are two of the more popular boutiques on Court Street. Some of their items can be expensive, but watch for their awesome sales! If you’re looking for some nearby OU apparel, try College Bookstore, Follett University Bookstore, or UniversiTEES.

East State Street. Did you know Athens has a mall? I use the term “mall” loosely. It consists of a couple stores like Elder-Beerman and Goody’s. These places usually have some good deals. Dunham’s Sports is also located at the mall. It’s basically Athen’s version of Dick’s Sporting Goods. They also have OU apparel there. If you need to go to a real mall, the closest one is actually in Vienna, West Virginia (about a 45 minute drive).

Explore East State some more and you’ll find a couple other gems like Rue 21. Check out the whole strip. You’ll also find SHOE Department.

 

We can’t forget Walmart. Other than underwear and socks, Walmart is good for simple clothing items like tank tops, sweat pants, or t-shirts. They also have cute, cheap OU apparel!

 

 

A NO BULLSH*T, TO THE POINT, SEASON-BY-SEASON GUIDE

The following information is subject to change due to the indecisive weather of the state of Ohio.

FALL

Leggings. Skinny jeans. Boots. Scarves. Vests. Hoodies. That’s all you need to know.

WINTER

Same as above. You may want to dress a little warmer and have a heavier jacket. Make sure you dress in layers because the classrooms can get really hot. If you want to REALLY break the “not giving a sh*t” meter,  just dress up as a winter Disney princess and lighten the mood on campus. Check out The Post’s article on this dude here.

SPRING

Spring is an interesting time in Athens. It can be 40 degrees or it can be 85 degrees. You’ll want to have some flip flops, jean shorts, rompers, comfy dresses, and tank tops. If the weather is in the “in-between phase” you can always mix and match tank tops with a pair of jeans and a light jacket. Athens can be pretty rainy too. Invest in some rain boots and a rain jacket.

FEST SEASON

You should dress obnoxiously. Everything and anything is acceptable (unless you’re naked..then the horse cops will get you). Fest season might be the only time where fanny packs are actually a fashion trend. Sports jerseys seem to be a common trend too. Make sure you wear clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty. You should definitely consider wearing boots. Also, show your school spirit. Wearing a lot of OU apparel is another option.

SUMMER

Wear the same outfits you’d wear in the spring if it’s hot. You can throw a bikini in there too.

WHY YOU ULTIMATELY SHOULDN’T GIVE A SH*T

OU is the greatest school. Coming here was the greatest decision of my life and it should be yours too. I have never seen anyone get judged or made fun of over something they chose to wear. We are all a loving Bobcat family. Don’t over think it.

 

MEMORABLE QUOTES FROM SEASONED VETERANS

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Alexa Uber (sophomore), center, poses with friends. “If you like to look cute everyday, look cute everyday. If you like messy buns and sweatshirts, that works too.”
Allison Hinton fearlessly dons her fanny pack. "This isn't high school anymore so you don't need to worry about what every other girl is wearing or if you'll stand out, do whatever makes you happy!"
Allison Hinton (freshman), left, fearlessly dons her fanny pack. “This isn’t high school anymore so you don’t need to worry about what every other girl is wearing or if you’ll stand out, do whatever makes you happy!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Victoria Fox (senior) poses with a friend prior to #fest. "Just do you boo boo."
Victoria Fox (senior), left, poses with a   friend prior to #FEST. “Just do you boo boo.”  

 

 

 

 

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Miranda Stepka (sophomore), left, poses with her friend. “Be your own person with confidence and you’ll look good in anything.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


*Subjects freely contributed the above Instagram photos 

7 Most Wanted Gifts for the Fashionistas

Holiday seasons are always full of joyful things and this year should be no exception. We have tastefully put together a list for you to shop for the wonderful fashionistas in your life! Everything on this list can be found in the boutiques on Court Street. So let’s peek into it!

1. Those that say you will never be complete without a pair of TOMS. Now it is a perfect time to get them for the seasonal colors are hard to come by!

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$49.99 At Figleaf

2. Who doesn’t need a pop of red to stand out in the dead of winter when everyone else around you is wearing dull colors? This multicolor wool beanie has a protective inner layer of fleece that will add extra warmth to your body when the snow is blowing on you.

The Other Place
$11.99 at The Other Place

3. Starting to see the trend going on here? Bet you are! Burgundy, magenta, and just very intense, bright, saturated reds are the most sought after this season. Get them for the ones you love before they are gone, who doesn’t need an extra pair of leggings anyway?

The Other Place
2 for $16 at The Other Place

4. Flannel scarves are always going to be in trend whether or not you decide to move to mars one day. The color-block ones are especially guaranteed to make your fashionistas smile because they are highly versatile and will add more texture to your look.

The Other Place
$16.99 at The Other Place

5. Now some really fun things. This would probably be the cutest hat you would find on Court Street. CVS is now carrying Christmas hats and there are a few other options that you could choose from. $5.99 at local CVS.

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6. These puffy earmuffs could be perfect stocking fillers. They are popular for the fun colors and the portable sizes. $25 at The Other Place

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7. Finally, some treats! Ghirardelli never fails to come up with the most festive packaging designs that you just could not walk away from. Chocolate is the most chic and delightful gift of all time.

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Left $4.99 Right $6.99 at local CVS

 

Pet store prices in Athens, Ohio

As the saying goes, “dogs are mans best friends”. While we all love our dogs, we often forget how expensive they can be. College students at Ohio University can especially relate to this. There are a lot of things to keep in mind when you purchase a dog like food, water, care, toys, and the list goes on and on.

College students often ask, where is the cheapest place to get these items? In Athens, Ohio, students choices are usually limited to three places; Walmart, Petland, and PetSmart. These three places have lots of different items that every dog needs, but what is the price we need to pay to make sure our dogs are taken care of?

I decided to take a look for myself. I went to the three places to compare the prices of six things I thought dogs needed: beds, toys, food, collars and leashes, flea and tick treatment, and treats. Here are the results:

Beds:

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The cheapest option: Walmart or PetSmart where it is sold for around $12.99 at each location. This is for a 24X18 inch bed, other sizes and prices vary, but the comfort doesn’t.

Collars and Leashes

Collars and leashes

The cheapest option: This one was tough because they do not sell the same leash and collar at all three stores. Since this was the case, I decided just to find the cheapest option at each location. Walmart wins this category with a collar and leash set priced at $6.99. The other two locations did not sell collars and leashes together.

Food

Food

The cheapest option: This was another tough one considering the wide varieties of dog food. I chose the Royal Canin 30lb. German Shepard bag. Petland and PetSmart both have this food priced at $59.99 which was cheaper than Walmart by almost $15!

Flea and Tick Treatment

Frontline

The cheapest option: Every dog should have flea and tick treatments considering they go outside often. Walmart has the cheapest prices in Athens. It’s $39.99 for three treatments for medium dogs(22-45 lbs.), which only makes it $13.33 per treatment!

Treats

Treats

The cheapest option: PetSmart wins this category. Greenies are a dog treat that also helps clean their teeth. These are a very popular brand of treats and only a little over $8 for a pack of six.

Toys

Tennis balls

The cheapest option: Every dog loves tennis balls and playing fetch in the park. PetSmart has the best deal on tennis balls at $4.19 for a pack of six.

Conclusion

Of course, these prices do change, especially if you are a rewards member or have coupons. Dogs can be a very expensive investment, so make sure before you buy one, you can handle that responsibility. Also, make sure to check the prices around Athens. Some stores will even price match if you are dedicated to one store. Do your research, save some money and one last thing….

Bob Barker

Do you have any favorite pet store prices in Athens, Ohio? comment below and tell us where you get your doggy products for cheap!

Halloween costumes are serious investments for those attending the block party on Court Street

DSC00002Re-selling Halloween costumes is not a popular option for attendees of HallOUween. Plenty have bought their unique costumes (sometimes with future use in mind) and are planning on keeping them if not to use again, then at least for the memories.

 

Hannah, 24, bought a yellow jumpsuit from an adult website to complete her version of The Bride from the Kill Bill movies, but she has no plans to sell it, saying, “On naughtyfox.com, it was either this or an $80 display costume.”
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Chad, dressed as Indiana Jones, says he would consider selling his costume on eBay or Craigslist only if he had to.DSC00004

 

Garret says he’s never going to sell his WWII style bomber cap which he got from Athens Underground in “one of the best deals I’ve come across in a while.”DSC00007

 

For Jacob Solether, his Stormtrooper costume is going to continue being useful by the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and he plans on wearing it at baseball games. The only place he would ever consider selling it, however, would be at comic-con.

For many, dressing up for the block party on Halloween is a valuable investment that is not taken lightly. For these few, it’s one they’ve made for most of the foreseeable future.

Confessions of a non-shopaholic

I am a 21-year-old college senior and I hate shopping. There I said it. I was a little surprised when my professor told me that I was put in the shopping section because I don’t really even know what to talk about. I am a non-shopaholic.

I mean for the past like 10 years, I’ve watched Sex and the City more times than I care to admit and you would think that I would have learned something about shopping, WRONG.

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I don’t even know where to begin. Some days I wish I could go back to when I was like three and I could get away with mismatching, or not even wearing clothes. Those were the glory days.

Since that is frowned upon in the adult world, I now have to partake in the “S” word: Shopping. It doesn’t matter what kind of shopping it is: online, in person, shoes, pants, hats. You name it and I probably dislike it.

When I go to a mall, I usually don’t even know where to begin. Have you ever noticed those people who just stand and stare at a map, or just keep walking around in circles? Yea, that’s me, just casually trying to get my steps for my FitBit. Deep down, it’s my pump up to actually going out and finding clothes.

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When I finally find a store, I feel like the shelves and rack go on for days! Where Do I start? How do I find my way out? Is there a map or like an SOS call if I get lost? I always start at the front and retrace my steps to get out.

After I start looking around, I usually end up finding something super cute. The next step in the process is finding my size. For anyone who is not 5’4 and a size 2, you know the struggle. I am personally 6’0 tall with more awkward curves than a country road so it’s even more impossible. After searching and asking a worker for help, I usually turn up empty handed. Strike one.

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The search continues deeper into a store with no back wall in sight. When, out of the corner of my eye, I see something else that is cute! When I go to take a closer look, I notice that it’s in my size! Then I usually stop and think to myself, “what would I wear with this strapless, flowy, see-through top?” I think about what I have already in my closest so I don’t have to do any more shopping than necessary, and then it dawns on me, there is nothing at home that would work. I put the shirt back on the rack and move on. Strike two.

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I keep looking, and when I finally have found the back of the store I also have found the thing my heart has longed for! It’s a cute shirt that’s in my size and I know that I have the perfect pair of pants to go with it! At this point, I truly believe in Jesus because this is a miracle! Then I look at the price tag. “Who is going to pay that much money for a shirt that looks like it was made from tissue paper,” I think to myself, “ I can’t afford this, I’m ballin’ on a budget”. I put it away, and leave the store empty handed. Strike three.

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At this point, I am pretty defeated, BUT, out of nowhere, I hear my name. I turn around and see the food court. This is right where I needed to be, with the things that will fully accept me. I usually always find something in my closet later to wear so it’s never truly an Earth-shattering even anyway! Problem solved and my shopping story ends on a happy note.

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I know I am not the only crazy one out there so comment below with your favorite shops or even your shopping horror stories! Happy shopping!

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Athens Mall

And the first isn’t that there is a mall in Athens! Formerly known as the University Mall, the mall is now referred to as the Market on State. Very few people know that this exists, but now that you do, here are 7 things you should probably know about it.

 

Screen Shot 2015-10-20 at 11.14.19 AM1. It’s located on East State Street.

Many students are well aware that East State Street is home to the Walmart, Kroger, and Pet Land, but the commercial strip also is home to A MALL. Say what? I know it’s shocking, but at 1002 E State Street, there is an indoor mall full of all types of surprises.

 

2. There’s a Bath and Body Works.

This is number two because, honestly, it shocked me the first time I walked into the mall. This highly commercialized soap and scent store has a nice little home in the mall, so students can purchase all their high end soap, body mist, and candle needs.

3. There’s a BMV.

Lose your ID after a night out on Court Street? Have no fear, the Athens Mall has a Bureau of Motor Vehicles that can take care of that for you.

4. There is a spa.

The Infinity Salon can take care of all your aches and pains. It offers services that span from hot stone back massages to body waxing. They also offer hair salon services for a full day of treating yourself.

playarea15. There’s a Children Play Area.

Creepy? Yeah, I kind of think so too….

 

 

Photo: http://eaststatestreetdevelopment.com/marketonstate.html

wall-of-art

6. The mall is home to lots of art.

Each month, the mall holds an art contest for a different grade level in the Athens Community. The artwork is featured in the mall that month, then judged by mall visitors. The top three winners are awarded prizes! It’s possible that those prizes come straight from the very mysterious mall….

Photo: http://eaststatestreetdevelopment.com/artmarket.html

anchor_store_elder_beerman_thumbnail7. The mall has it’s very own “Mall Walkers” group.

An essential to every big-time mall is that there are regulars, who come to the mall to just simply enjoy walking around the mall. And after learning all these amazing things about the mall in Athens, I leave you with the fact that there is a specific group of individuals known as the “Mall Walkers.” You can probably guess what their group entails, but in case you can’t, they get their exercise in by walking around the mall, dubbing their group the “Mall Walkers.”

Photo: http://eaststatestreetdevelopment.com/artmarket.html

 

Treat Yo Self at the Athens Farmer’s Market

The push to support local products has greatly increased in recent years. With the growth of genetically modified foods, it has been more and more difficult to find fresh produce that has not been unnaturally altered in some way.

Fortunately, Athens has an answer to both of these dilemmas. Every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., the Athens Farmer’s Market is open in the parking lot beside Texas Roadhouse on East State Street. Additionally, the Farmer’s Market is open from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Wednesdays from April through December and from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursdays from May through September.

The Farmer’s Market is a delight in the fall. On a crisp Saturday morning in the autumn, what could be better than sampling and buying some great local foods? The market is brimming with all kinds of delectable fall eats: apple cider made with locally grown apples, squash, kettle corn, pumpkin pies and bread, maple walnut fudge, you name it.

I visited the Athens Farmer’s Market to talk to a few vendors about their bestselling fall items and why they chose this market as a venue for their products.