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Girls’ Night hailed as great success

Spirits were high at the second annual Girls’ Night out Thursday.

     More than 1,400 women started their night off at Bank of Brookhaven, where they received T-shirts and dinner from Broma’s. Cliff Brumfield, executive director of the Brookhaven-Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce, said the event went better than expected.

     “Everything’s been fantastic,” he said. “We had twice the crowd [as last year], but registration was faster and smoother.”

     Though registration operated as a drive-thru, many women walked from homes or other parking lots. Night Out shoppers included Brookhaven resident Kayla Ray, her grandmother Dot Smith and her mother-in-law Beverly Ray.

     “We decided to come last minute,” Kayla Ray said while holding her 4-month-old daughter, Maggie Rose. “We’re going to stay out as long as [Maggie] will let us.”

     The group walked from a relative’s house nearby, and said they planned to go to as many stores as they could walk to. Other than that, they said they didn’t have much of a plan, which seemed to be the overall theme of the night.

     Brookhaven resident Shelina Humphries brought her 8-year-old daughter, Kaytlin, to the event, but they only planned to go to as many of the stores as they could.

     “A lot of times I can’t make it to these stores due to business hours,” she said as she looked through the 50 percent off rack outside of Snazzies. “It’s great.”

     Nearly every store stayed packed throughout the night, and the checkout lines at some were 10-15 people deep. Many stores gave away cookies and cupcakes, and sidewalk sales were abundant.

     Willie Del Richardson and her daughter, Deborah Brady, were found outside Judy’s II browsing their table of $10 shoes. Both said they weren’t shopping for anything in particular.

     “But if I’m finding shoes, I’m finding what I’m looking for,” Brady said.

     Not everyone came without an idea of what they wanted.

     Angela Rives, who lives in Jackson and is about five months pregnant, said she came to get some on-sale baby items.

     “We got my baby’s bedding from [Expectations] a few months ago,” she said as she and her mother, Cindi Latson, stood in line at the store. “We heard about this event then, so we decided to come.” 

     The evening seemed to go smoothly for all involved.

     The night was topped off with an ice cream social at Brookhaven Monument, where volunteers scooped vanilla and chocolate ice cream for everyone who stopped by. There was also cake and various toppings for sundaes.

      Women sat around the room talking about their purchases and relaxing after a very busy night.

     “We just shopped until we dropped,” said Cacey Beeson, who was with her 3-year-old daughter, Kelcey Claire, and a friend. “There were a lot of good sales.”

     Brumfield said none of those sales would’ve happened had it not been for the volunteers.

     “We appreciate everyone who helped set up, everyone in the stores and we appreciate the shoppers,” he said. “We’re looking forward to a bigger and better event next year.”