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LEGO Releases 2014 Holiday Toy Catalog

Monday, Oct 20, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Lego Holiday CatalogLEGO is one of those toy companies that truly appeals to everyone. I personally know a 26-year-old married man with a LEGO collection that takes up his entire garage, a 7-year-old boy genius who can build even the most complicated LEGO sets in a matter of hours (without directions!), and a 13-year-old girl who isn’t ashamed to show off her Star Wars LEGO collection to her middle school friends. Anyone who’s ever sat down with a set knows there’s something fundamentally entertaining about playing with LEGOs. There’s no limit on what you can create, which puts an infinite number of cars, buildings and entire worlds at your imaginative fingertips.

Needless to say, the products inside the 2014 LEGO Holiday Toy Catalog are sure to make a big splash at holiday celebrations around the globe. The catalog features LEGO sets based on year’s hottest films (think ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ and ‘The Lego Movie’), old favorites like Batman and Star Wars, DUPLO block sets for younger LEGO fans and for old pros, the LEGO Architect series, which allows users to build replicas of famous landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the White House. With so many options, it would be hard NOT to find something for the LEGO fan on your list.

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Target’s 2014 Holiday Toy Book is Out!

Friday, Oct 17, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Target's 2014 holiday toy bookIt seems like with each coming day we get something new related to Black Friday. Today it’s Target’s 2014 Holiday Toy Book.

Kmart, Toys ‘R’ Us, and Amazon have already released informal toy lists, but Target is the first big-time retailer to have its toy book leaked. Similar to the others, Target is going all-in on Frozen, iPhones, and new-generation game systems, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

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5 Important Reasons Why Black Friday Campouts Aren’t Worth It for Most of Us

Wednesday, Oct 15, 2014 at 4:38 PM

It seems that every year a few die hards make the local news by spending a week or more camped out in front of a store, usually Best Buy, so they can be the first in line for a doorbuster deal on a television or some other bit of electronics. Is it really worth it?

Flickr / Matt McGee

Flickr / Matt McGee

Kurt Johnson certainly thought so, spending two days camping out in front Best Buy last year, drawn by the prospect of a 55″ Samsung LED TV for $800.

I think if I had waited without a plan and just for the TV then it would not have been worth it,” Johnson, owner of fitness company Swoll For Life, said. “But I had friends come by and had a little tailgate setup going so it ended up being kind of a fun urban camping experience on its own that happened to come with a great TV at the end.”

When presented with the idea of doing it again, however, Johnson was more ambivalent. “[I'm] probably not camping this year, but that’s because I’m going to visit family out of town. I might consider it in the future if I have some friends willing to hang out and make it fun again. I wouldn’t camp out by myself just for a good deal.”

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Amazon Releases the Year’s Biggest Toy List Yet

Wednesday, Oct 15, 2014 at 10:51 AM

Amazon Toy List 2014If you’re gonna be late, you better go big. Weeks after Black Friday giants like Target, Toys ‘R’ Us and Kmart released their holiday toy lists, Amazon has followed suit with their own 2014 Holiday Toy List, which may just be the most comprehensive compilation of toys we’ve seen this season. While most of the other toy retailers’ lists feature under 20 toys, Amazon’s is packed full of HUNDREDS of dolls, Lego sets, movies, tablets, and much, much more.

According to a press release Amazon put out this morning: “For the first time, the annual Holiday Toy List includes commentary from Amazon product experts and toy enthusiasts on the latest toy trends.” The toys are also divided up into 25 different categories, including new ones like “Mom Picks,” “S.T.E.M.” and “Wood & Recycled.” Amazon customers can also filter their search based on age, gender, brand and price range, making it simple to find the perfect holiday gift for all the kids on your list.

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Harbor Freight Releases 2014 Black Friday ad!

Tuesday, Oct 14, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Harbor Frieght Black Friday 2014 AdGet ready, Black Friday fans. Harbor Freight has released its 2014 Black Friday ad, and if the past few years are any indication, a flurry of other ads are sure to follow in its footsteps. Die-hard Black Friday groupies will be pleased to note that the discount tool retailer is keeping the “Friday” in Black Friday, opening its stores at 7am Friday morning (although “Inside Track” members are allowed in starting at 6am) and not caving to pressure from stores like Macy’s, which is poised to begin its sales on Thanksgiving night.

Harbor Freight’s Black Friday sale will last from Friday to Sunday, but getting in early is probably the best way to score the biggest deals.

So what’s inside Harbor Freight’s 2014 Black Friday circular? The 4-page ad features sales similar to what we’ve seen in previous years. There are Pittsburgh Pro torque wrenches for $9.99, 60″ 4-drawer Windsor Design workbenches for just $129.99, and for those looking to cut down on energy costs while giving the earth a little R&R, you can snatch up a 45-watt Thunderbolt Magnum solar panel kit for $139.99, down from its usual price of $299.99.

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Will Prime Members Get First Dibs at Amazon’s Black Friday Deals?

Monday, Oct 13, 2014 at 11:17 AM

Got an Amazon Prime account? You just got a new holiday shopping perk.

Amazon announced this morning that Prime members will be treated to early access to select Lightning Deals and MyHabit sales events throughout the holiday season.

“Holiday shopping has become synonymous with deal shopping and this holiday, we’re adding new ways for customers to find special gifts for everyone on their list with savings throughout the season,” said Greg Greeley, Vice President, Amazon Prime. “With early access deals for Prime members, we are providing our most frequent shoppers with a first look at some of the best offers from Amazon and MyHabit this holiday, and all year.”

The press release goes on to explain that members will get access to select Lightning Deals, marked as “Prime Early Access Deals” 30 minutes before everyone else (see red arrows below):


Lightning Deals are limited time, limited quantity offers that are sold throughout the day at Amazon.com.

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7 New Rules for Black Friday Shopping Like a Pro

Monday, Oct 13, 2014 at 9:30 AM

Although the same generic, tired Black Friday shopping tips make the rounds every year, Black Friday itself has changed dramatically since we began our annual coverage in 2009. I decided it was time to revisit and update the old rules for Black Friday 2014, but I didn’t stop there. I also added seven brand new rules that all Black Friday shoppers should be following this season.

First, let’s review my original Top 10 Black Friday shopping tips:

10 Classic Black Friday Tips, 2014 Edition

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Blain’s Farm & Fleet Releases their Own ‘Toyland’ Holiday Ad!

Friday, Oct 10, 2014 at 10:43 AM

Blain's Farm & Fleet Toyland AdI feel it is my duty to inform you that Blain’s Farm & Fleet is not in a long-standing Shakespearean feud with competitor Mills Fleet Farm. Despite what’s suggested by their eerily similar names, nearly identical product stock and years of rumors about their disdain for each other, I was disappointed to discover that the two companies are not a result of a messy divorce or a falling out between brothers, but are instead just unrelated Midwest retailers vying for the same slice of the proverbial consumer pie.

But it’s easy to see where these rumors came from: just one day after Mills Fleet Farm released their 2014 ‘Toyland’ holiday ad, Blain’s Fleet & Farm came out swinging this morning with their own (you guessed it!) 2014 ‘Toyland’ holiday ad. At a glance, it’s nearly impossible to tell the difference between the two ads. Both covers display the name ‘Toyland’ in fun rainbow bubble letters and both naturally feature some kind of ‘Frozen’ merch on the first page.

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CONFIRMED: Macy’s Black Friday to Begin at 6pm on Thanksgiving

Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 5:39 PM

UPDATE: Macy’s has now confirmed their 6pm opening time in an article posted to CNN Money“We work diligently to staff Thanksgiving with associates who volunteer to work and doing so means that our people are able to make their own decisions about how they contribute to our most important and busiest weekend of the year,” said Macy’s, in a prepared statement. “We also heard last year from many associates who appreciated the opportunity to work on Thanksgiving so they could have time off on Black Friday.”

Macy’s sent out an email to employees today telling them to plan on opening their doors at 6pm on Thanksgiving night, according to a report coming from WPXI News in Pittsburgh. The article, citing an email posted to social media, gives a start time two hours earlier than last year.

Macy's Black Friday HoursBecause this is not an official company announcement and we have not seen an actual copy of the email ourselves, we must classify it as a rumor. However, it’s about as solid as rumors get, so we’re comfortable telling you to pencil it in on your Black Friday agenda and are adding it to our Black Friday Store Hours. In the meantime, we are working to track down the original post. If you have a copy of the Macy’s email, please forward it to our team at bf@bradsdeals.com so we can report these hours as confirmed.

Here’s the purported text of the company-wide email to Macy’s employees:

“After careful consideration, we have decided to open at 6:00 PM (local time) on Thanksgiving. Although this was not an easy decision, due to competitive pressure, we feel it is the right one for out customers and our company. There is no question that our customers are eager to begin their holiday shopping on Thanksgiving Day.

We are asking once again, for you to volunteer to work on Thanksgiving Day. By volunteering you have the opportunity to decide how you want to contribute to our most critical and busiest weekend of the year.”

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Mills Fleet Farm Unveils “Toyland” Holiday Toy Catalog

Thursday, Oct 09, 2014 at 5:08 PM

toylandToday Fleet Farm released its 64-page “Toyland” seasonal toy catalog. The sale launches Saturday, October 18 and runs through November 8. You can expect to see the Fleet Farm Black Friday ad in the near future. Keep an eye out for it here.

The catalog features many of the season’s hottest toys, including a wide selection of sporting goods, Frozen toys and LEGO products for kids of all ages. Check out the full catalog here.

Here are a few of our favorite picks:

  • Disney Frozen Elsa & Anna Ice Skating Dolls (Page 3)
  • Ultimate Easy Bake Oven (Page 12)
  • FurReal Friends Go Go 4.0 Animated Puppy (Page 16)
  • Nerf Elite 2-in-1 Demolisher (Page 27)
  • LEGO Creator, Duplo & Chima Play Sets (Page 42)

Fleet Farm doesn’t offer layaway but with the Mills Fleet Farm Credit Card there is no interest if your balance is paid in full within 6 months of purchase. This is similar to Best Buy’s deferred interest financing.

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