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1,000 expected at Girls Night Out — Tickets $20 now, $25 beginning Monday

The shoppers are coming, from Jackson and McComb and Natchez and Louisiana, probably 1,000 of them. Margaret Ann Britt is ready.

She has rearranged and cleaned up. She has ordered new bracelets and earrings by Marianna. She’s going to mark the whole store down 25 percent

“Can I handle 1,000 people? I know I can,” Britt said. “I hope they line up all the way down the street, all the way to the Chamber of Commerce.”

Britt’s jewelry store, Fashion Jewelry on Whitworth Avenue, is one of 36 Brookhaven businesses ready to welcome them, a crush of teal-clad ladies from across the region come to shop, and eat, and dance at the eighth annual Girls Night Out, a weekend retail promotion organized by the Brookhaven-Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce.

The ladies begin arriving en masse next Thursday evening to hit up the participating businesses, a good piece of Brookhaven’s retail community from women’s boutiques to furniture to restaurants, many of which are running specials to welcome the chance to do business with the crowd.

“We do Girls Night Out just to create some retail excitement through the middle of the summer,” said Katie Nations, programs director with the Chamber. “Our retailers work hard all year long, so we started this as a way to promote them through the mid-summer slump you see all across the country in retail this time of year.”

Tickets to Girls Night Out are $20 and available at participating businesses through Friday. Beginning Monday, ticket prices increase to $25 and are available only at the Chamber on Whitworth Avenue.

The ticket packet includes more than 80 coupons for participating businesses, the official event T-shirt and a $10 meal voucher good at participating restaurants. While Girls Night Out has always been a one-night affair, this year the first coupon in the packet is good through June 23 and the second coupon is good through the end of summer.

Participating businesses include 601 Sports, B-Dazzled Boutique, Beyond the Rainbow, Broma’s Deli, Brookhaven ENT Allergy and Facial Surgery, Bus Stop Trading Post and Antique Restorers, Castles, Clementine Country Store, CoolSculpting by Southern Surgical Services, Detour 51, Engravables, Erin and Co., Expectations and Expectations Too, Fashion Jewelry, Georgia Blue, Georgia Blue Bakery, Hall and Co., Inside Out featuring The Nook, J. Allan’s, Judy’s II Shoes and More, Melinda’s Fabrics/Interiors, Picket Fences Vendors, Poppa’s Fish House, Roxy Magnolia, Ruby and Ethel Upscale Resale, Southern Grace Salon Spa and Boutique, Southern Style, Southern Treasures, Sweet Tea Boutique, The Fish Fry, The Honey Pot, The Well-Dressed Man, The Venue at Five Fifty, Vendor’s Emporium and Zeal Consignment.

The Thursday night event will conclude at 9 p.m. with an after-party at The Venue at Five Fifty featuring a DJ, hors d’oeuvres, cupcakes and cocktails. Events pick back up Saturday morning with the first Girls Night Out 5K run.

“Brookhaven has it all, and we’re proud of our locally-owned small businesses,” Nations said. “We want people shopping and eating and staying in Brookhaven.”