For the first time ever, the Westfield Brandon shopping mall will open its doors at midnight Black Friday to give shoppers a head start on their holiday shopping.
Additionally, Westfield is providing shoppers with various tools and services that will help make holiday shopping as convenient and easy as possible.
In an effort to spread holiday cheer and goodwill this season, Westfield has teamed up with local nonprofit organizations and charities for a Festival of Trees.
Westfield Brandon will host a special celebration event to kick off the Festival of Trees, which is sponsored by MIX 100.7, on Sunday, Nov. 18 from 2 to 4 p.m. The event will include visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus and interactive family activities, including ornament decorating, a scavenger hunt, food sampling and more.
Trees decorated by the charities will be near Dick’s Sporting Goods. Voting will take place on Westfield Brandon’s Facebook page through Dec. 24. Participating charities include the YMCA, the Greater Brandon Community Foundation - Foundation Angel, the Boys & Girls Club of Tampa Bay, Girl Scout Troop 986 of Brandon, the Sylvia Thomas Center for Adoptive and Foster Families and the Trey Curry Foundation.
To benefit the winning charity, Westfield Brandon will sell raffle tickets for one lucky shopper to win a professionally decorated tree, which will be on display at the Santa set throughout the holiday shopping season. Raffle tickets will be available through Dec. 16 at the Westfield Concierge Booth for $5 each or five for $20. Proceeds from the raffle will go to the charity that receives the most votes.
Shoppers also will be able to register to win a $500 shopping spree at specially decorated holiday trees sponsored by White House/Black Market, bebe, Lucky Brand Jeans, Gymboree, Justice and Clarks Kids.
As part of Westfield’s overall holiday festivities, shoppers can participate in a Scavenger Hunt through Dec. 24 to find ornament stickers on retailer store windows and other areas of the mall. Participants will be challenged to spot and photograph five ornaments using their smart phones or cameras and then visit the concierge to receive a limited-edition holiday ornament for their own Christmas trees. (Shoppers who don’t have a camera phone can obtain a paper entry form from the concierge.)
In addition to creating a magical holiday experience for its shoppers, Westfield has set out to provide various digital tools that make holiday shopping simple and convenient. With shoppers’ valuable time in mind, Westfield is implementing a Santa Photos FastPass program, which will allow customers to purchase their photo packages of kids with Santa in advance via www.westfield.com for access to a special FastPass line upon arrival after showing their receipt. Those who download the free Westfield App v2.0 will receive $3 off of Photo Package A.
The Westfield App has an entire suite of features that were developed to save shoppers time and money, including expanded keyword search functionality to find specific products, special events, dining options, store locations and more; an enhanced mall directory and map; curated holiday offers and deals from the mall’s retailers; social media integration for real-time updates; and a voice-command concierge feature that allows shoppers to “Tap to Ask” anything from “Where can I take Santa photos?” to “Where can I buy a gift card?”
To help shoppers identify the hottest gifts this holiday season, Westfield has created an eight-week “Gifts We Love” gift guide series via Facebook that will run through Dec. 28. Each week will have its own theme (“For Him,” “For Her,” For Teens,” etc.) and Westfield will post daily suggestions for gifts available from its retailers at various price points.
As part of this gift guide series, Westfield is having a national “Love to Gift” sweepstakes, also via Facebook, which will “Cover Christmas” with a $1,000 shopping spree for four lucky shoppers. In addition to the four grand prizes, a multi-level, enter-to-win opportunity will give eight weekly first prize winners a $500 shopping spree and 40 daily winners a $50 gift card.