On Saturday, December 18, 2010 the Downtown Paterson Special Improvement District hosted a Santa’s Workshop and activity zone at 197 Main Street for the residents and shoppers of Downtown Paterson.
Unlimited pictures with Santa were offered per each child in attendance. Furthermore, decorations were in abundance underneath Santa’s walkway filled with life-sized holiday themed balloon-art sculptures. Children also had the opportunity to fulfill the old-time tradition of sitting upon Santa’s knee to whisper what they wanted for Christmas in his ear. Much unlike the mall, Santa was able to spend much more attention to each child and walked around the space also getting involved in the other activities presented.
Cotton candy and candy canes were handed out in great quantities to help celebrate the holiday cheer and to appease any sweet tooth. In addition, create-your-own sand art sculptures as well as professional face-paintings were offered for the young and the young at heart.
Each activity was hosted with smiling faces and helpers who were eager to assist children as much as possible. Holiday music was playing non-stop over the loud speakers to add to the feel.
Every activity was FREE of charge and was sponsored by the Downtown SID, which is a non-profit membership comprised of all of the merchants, property-owners, and businesses of Downtown Paterson.
This fun holiday treat is only one of the many FREE events and giveaways sponsored by the SID and its members, each year. For a complete listing of the other offerings please visit www.shoppaterson.com .
Rainbow stores have become a name that has truly made a mark since its Brooklyn inception in 1935. Over the past 75 years, nearly 1,100 Rainbow shops have been established in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. With this many storefronts spread throughout 38 states and beyond, its shops inventory staple clothing and accessories “go-tos” for many girls, teens, young ladies, and middle-aged women.
With most stores based in the greater New York area, many women within the Paterson community are proud owners of Rainbow products. As the brand has developed itself in the past few years, adding a Plus Size department and expanding its shoe and lingerie lines, Rainbow Shops proves its dedication to serving markets between the ages of 14-49. In addition, Rainbow even sells school uniforms, providing accessible one-stop shopping for back-to-school and office attire clothing needs for children and mothers, alike.
Due to its fairly priced items mostly falling in the $12-25 range and its anchorage in inner urban shopping districts Rainbow Shops has been successful at serving downtown communities. The logo has become recognizable to many people and their online advertising has made Rainbow Shops, under the names of Rainbow, Rainbow Plus, Rainbow Kids, One Price, Kidspot, Caren Charles, Fashion Cents, Best Price, Foxmoor Emphasis, Ups N Downs, 5-7-9, and Marianne a true champion in the business.
Lucky for the Downtown Paterson community, a Rainbow Shop is conveniently located on Main Street, selling juniors, plus sizes, lingerie, children’s wear, shoes, and accessories. This Rainbow Shop has been an essential store to the shopping district for ten years, effectively supplying its customers with in demand products.
Store owner, Sal Eldien, is proud to serve the constituents of Paterson and other local cities and is pleased to be well-established downtown. He admits to certain challenges over the years, one being the current state of the economy. Yet just like behind any other prosperous business, there are managers such as Sam, who look to make positive adjustments to survive any rocky patches.
Throughout the last decade, Sam has seen the downtown area change immensely. The demographics frequently turn over and the continual great pull to large shopping malls may have unfortunately drawn some customers away. However, the fact that Sam was able to adapt national Rainbow policies in a strategic way to serve his specific customers shows his passion to honor their needs.
In addition, the cleanliness and likeable appeal of the downtown streets have changed, once causing a concern for business. “The streets weren’t as well-kept, as they are now,” he states. “I’m grateful that (former) Mayor Torres and Mayor Jones have tried to establish downtown and keep it clean and safe,” he continued.
Furthermore, Sal believes that although there is always friendly competition between local businesses, the new establishments of other name brand stores such as Toys R’ Us Express and many other shops inside the Center City Mall, as well as the continued accomplishments of stores such as Shopper’s World, among others, will help to continue to draw customers to the area.
Organizations and government programs such as the Downtown Special Improvement District, the Urban Enterprise Zone, and the Greater Paterson Chamber of Commerce have also done their part to restructure the area and rebuild Paterson as a shopping destination. As a member of the Chamber of Commerce, Sal is highly involved in the state of local business and cares deeply about the economic condition of Paterson. He has taken part in several discussions about small business concerns such as revitalization and parking issues, with local elected officials and the aforementioned organizations, to not only see triumph for business, but also to lend a hand to his neighbors. With community investments like these, Sal will only seek to help Paterson thrive and is certainly a vital businessman in the community.
Consequently, all Rainbow Shops must follow company floor plans and certain regulations, but most shops also cater to the community they serve. Sal says that the plus size department and the shoe department do well in Paterson. He feels that the Plus Size was a nice addition to the Rainbow lines, as the junior-size cuts throughout the rest of the store may not fit most adult women. He’s comfortable knowing that his store can accurately serve his patrons.
Furthermore, Sal notices that his sales are highest the first and second week of the month and he keeps his staff ready and prepared for the larger flow of customers. He also honors the online coupons and the senior citizens’ discounts. Yet to specifically benefit the Paterson community, Sal may offer additional discounts to regular customers because he feels that special touches such as these make all the difference.
Moreover, Sal believes that the small businesses thrive when owners and managers are present and active in the store’s production. He states, “It is their business and they truly care about the sales made. Furthermore, they can address situations and make any necessary decisions right away.” This mentality truly shows to be unparalleled taking into account the continued sales of the store throughout the last decade.
When asked to sum up what sets a business apart from others of its kinds, Sal states that quality, personal service is the key. He believes that if you offer good service, quality items, and fair prices you will always attract business, no matter the state of the economy, or the allowance of the spenders. Downtown Paterson constituents are certainly serviced by his business rituals that serve to assist the community.
Rainbow Shops at 175 Main Street is open on Sun: 9:30AM-7PM, Mon-Wed: 9:30AM-7:30PM, and Thu-Sat: 9:30AM-8PM. For more information on store products and policies please call 973-345-8505 or visit www.rainbowshops.com.