Shop-O-Matic: Deals, coupons, freebies, sales, bargains and tips for thrifty shoppers | Sun Sentinel blogs

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April 30, 2012

Betsey Johnson LLC files for bankruptcy protection

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Betsey Johnson LLC., a fashion retailer behind the designer known for her neon-colored spreads and clothing designs, has filed for Chapter 11 bankrupty protection, Reuters reports.

All Six South Florida retail stores will close, according to one Boca Raton employee. Store closures could come as early as a month's time.

There are more than 65 Betsey Johnson retail stores worldwide, including six in South Florida. The clothing line is also sold in stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s.

Betsey Johnson stores are in the Town Center at Boca Raton, Aventura Mall, Sawgrass Mills, Dadeland Mall, the Gardens Mall or the Village of Merrick Park.


The stores sell a mix of rock-n-roll and hippie-themed clothing, but also include cocktail dresses and accessories aimed at younger women.


Declining sales and profitability led to the decline, said the Reuters story. The fashion house listed total assets of $21.3 million and total liabilities of $15.4 million at the end of 2011. Betsey Johnson LLC has been unable to find new buyers or investors, according to the Reuters report.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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$10 off $50 Lowe's gift cards at Publix with purchase

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Save $10 on a $50 Lowe's gift card with a $25 grocery purchase at Publix.

The coupon is printed on the cover of the yellow "Happy Mother's Day" flyer in the lower, left-hand corner. Grab one at the store entrance.

This is an offer we haven't seen before. Usually, Publix offers $10 savings on gas cards.
We always need something down at the home improvement store, so this is a nice deal, too.

The offer expires on May 18.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free With Purchase (99)

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Free $10 movie ticket with DVD purchase at Amazon.com

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Get a free $10 movie ticket to see "Battleship," "The Bourne Legacy" or "Snow White and the Huntsman" when you buy select DVDs from Amazon.com.

Purchase one of 35 DVD titles, such as "Robin Hood" starring Russell Crowe or "Public Enemies," with Johnny Depp and get a Fandango.com code redeemable for the free movie ticket valued at $10. Most of the movies cost less than $10.

After you make the eligible purchase, the code should be emailed within 48 hours. Redeem the codes at Fandango.com/Promo/Summerofaction.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends on Aug. 11.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free With Purchase (99), Movies (49)

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April 29, 2012

Library offers free music downloads with Freegal Music Service

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Get three free music downloads each week using the Freegal Music Service available through the Broward and Orange County libraries.

Local libraries are offering free e-books, music and more with mobile technology to compete with online retailers Amazon, Apple and Barnes & Noble. Best part: It's all free with a library card.

The Freegal service, available nationally through local librarires, gives library-card members free access to to 50 record labels in Sony's music catalog. The MP3 files are yours to keep.

Users can choose from hundreds of thousands of tunes in every musical genre, from rock to rap to pop to classical. Artists include Aerosmith, Beyonce, Pitbull and Carrie Underwood, among other top hitmakers.

Miami-Dade Public Library System and Palm Beach County Library do not currently subscribe to Freegal, but they do offer free e-books and apps.

In Broward County, go to Broward.FreegalMusic.com. Enter your library card number; the PIN is the last four digits of your phone number.

In Central Florida, visit OCLS.Info/FreegalMusic.asp

Rock on!

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free downloads (108), Music (45)

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Save $50 on electric, water, phone or cable bills from Energizer Battery

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Get up to $50 off utility bills with the Energizer Battery Utility Rewards Program running through 2013.

Purchase specially-marked packages of Energizer-brand batteries and get one or two codes per package. Then, redeem them to help pay for electric, phone, water or cable bills.

Rewards range from $2.50 for two codes to $25 for 10, up to two $25 rewards per household; codes can only be redeemed online. You will be asked for your utility account number during registration.

Also, you can elect to donate codes to Habitat for Humanity.

Visit EnergizerUtilitiesCash.com to see the list of of eligible products and retailers along with promotion rules.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends on March 31, 2013 or while supplies last.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free With Purchase (99), Reward Programs (8)

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April 28, 2012

Free $14 Art of Shaving Shaving Cream at Bloomingdale's on Saturday

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Guys, upgrade your shave at Bloomingdale's on Saturday, April 28, for free.

Score a free full-size Art of Shaving Shaving Cream valued at $14 with exchange of a can of shaving cream.

Click here for the deal. The offer is while supplies last.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Beauty Products (184), Free (607)

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Free Victoria's Secret Angel panty on Saturday ($10 value)

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Get a free $10 Victoria's Secret Angel panty with any purchase on Saturday.

Print the coupon and redeem it in stores or online with coupon code PANTY.

Click here for the deal. The offer, one per person, is while supplies last.

Also, VS is offering a free three-bangle bracelet set with any $75 purchase. That offer expires Sunday

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free With Purchase (99)

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April 26, 2012

It's a sign switcheroo at Bru’s Room in Pompano

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Driven by Bru’s Room Sports Grill in Pompano Beach lately and seen a sign for another restaurant?

Wings lovers need not worry. The old Eddie Hauck’s Wings and Ribs sign is temporarily visible at the restaurant’s location on Federal Highway while the original Bru’s sign is being fixed, employees confirmed. The Hauck sign is a place holder until a new Bru’s sign is fixed and remounted onto the side of the building. The sign should be fixed soon, employees said.

The Bru’s Room Sports Grill restaurant is the same as its always been and the name is not changing, employees reassured.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

Photo by Carline Jean, Sun Sentinel.


POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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Free entrance to national parks through Sunday

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Get in free at U.S. National Parks on Saturday through Sunday, April 29, as part of the park system's free entrance program. The park service is waiving fees to over 100 parks around the country to celebrate National Park Week.

Parks on the Florida list: Everglades National Park, Dry Tortugas National Park, Canaveral National Seashore, Castillo de San Marcos National Monument and Gulf Islands National Seashore.

Explore Shark Valley, right, by tram or bike and see thousands of beautiful migratory birds and countless alligators sunning themselves long the 15-mile loop. Call 305-221-8455 or visit Everglades Guided Tour page for prices and times.

Take the Anhinga Amble, a free, ranger-led 50-minute walk down the Anhinga Trail where visitors can easily view gators, wading birds and wildlife. Tours are at 10:30 a.m. daily through November. Meet at Royal Palm benches.

Click here for the deal.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Things to Do (93)

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April 25, 2012

Score free tickets to new iPic Theater in Boca Raton

Sign up for a membership and get a free ticket to the state-of-the-art iPic Theater opening in Boca Raton in early May.

iPic Theaters, the new upscale movie theater with restaurant and lounge services, electric reclining seats and a premium-level seating option that comes with unlimited popcorn, is opening in Mizner Park on May 4.

Sign up for a free membership by May 1 to get the free admission as well as other benefits, like discounts on food, tickets, advanced online ticket purchasing and exclusive early screenings of blockbuster films. After sign up, the free ticket will be added to member accounts on May 2 and is good for movie showings Monday through Thursday after the Theater opens on Friday, May 4.

Premium seats on the weekends s are $14 for members and non-members. Monday through Thursday premium seats are $12 for members and $14 for non-members. Premium-Plus seats are $24 through the weekend for both members and non-members. Monday – Thursday Premium-Plus seats are $18 for members $24 for non-members.

Click here to sign up.

The iPic Theater will be screening "The Avengers", which debuts Friday May 4.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free (607), Movies (49)

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April 24, 2012

Free It's a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product with purchase at GBS Beauty Stores

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Get a free bottle of It's a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product valued at $12 with any $15 purchase at South Florida GBS Beauty Stores on Tuesday.

The awesome offer makes it a great time to stock up on spring beauty essentials. Plus, the TSA-ready two-ounce bottle of It's a 10 is the prefect travel size for girls on-the-go.

We love the Miracle Leave-In Product because it does 10 hair chores with a few sprays: Repairs dry, damaged hair; adds shine; smooths and controls frizz; seals and protects hair color; detangles; prevents split ends; stops hair breakage; creates silkiness; enhances natural body and gives flat iron thermal protection.

Visit a GBS store from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. to get the goods. Don't forget to flash your customer benefit card. If you don't have one, it's free to sign up in stores in Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Aventura, Coral Gables and Pinecrest.

Click here for the deal. The offer is one per customer while supplies last.


Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Beauty Products (184), Free With Purchase (99)

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Free bottles of Bayer Advanced Aspirin daily through Wednesday

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Bayer Advanced Aspirin is giving away 100,000 bottles of pain reliever over 10 days.

Check in between 2 and 4 p.m. Tuesday (the time changes daily) to get one of 10,000 free bottles. Then, share your opinion after you try it and Bayer will donate $1 (up to $100,000) to the American Red Cross.

In the meantime, visit the link before or after the daily promotion and get a coupon for $2 off any Bayer Advanced product. The coupon does not exclude trial sizes, so you should be able to get a free bottle.

Click here for the deal. The promotion ends on April 25. The freebie should arrive by mail in 7 to 10 days.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free (607)

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Free domain name, website and hosting for businesses from Google

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Intuit and Google are offering Florida small businesses free custom domain names, websites and hosting in the "Get Your Business Online" initiative.

The program, available nationwide, offers a free customized domain name, an easy-to-build Intuit website, free hosting for a year along with tools, training and step-by-step instructions.

How it works: The site walks you through the setup process. First, sign in or create a Google gmail account and agree to the terms.

Then, with a few clicks of the mouse, your business will be up and running on the Internet. Choose a domain name, which will be your company's web address, select an Intuit template and customize to put your personal stamps on the site. When done, publish and you're off to the races.

There also is a helpful learning center with lessons on online and offline marketing, tips on choosing a domain name and more.

According to Google, 67 percent of small business are not online, yet 97 percent of American consumers use online media to research products and services. "Get Your Business Online" aims to change that. The program is offered in partnership with Enterprise Florida, the Florida Chamber of Commerce and the Florida Small Business Development Center Network, SCORE, among others.

Click here for the deal.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Free (607)

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April 23, 2012

Pep Boys offers free or discounted Greenworks lawnmowers with trade-in

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Earth Day may be over, but Pep Boys is still offering amazing deals on three eco-friendly lawn mowers with trade in of a working gas-powered lawnmower.

Bring your old working mower (minus the gas) to the store and get for free an 18-inch, five-blade GreenWorksTools Reel Lawmower valued at $99.

If a human-powered mower doesn't make the cut, trade-up for two other models at up to 75 percent off the retail price.

Choose from a 20-inch 12 amp 3-in-1 mower for $75, ($249 value) or
20-inch 24V 3-in-1 mower, right, for $150 ($299 value).

Pep Boys is making the offer as part of a settlement agreement the company signed with the Environmental Protection Agency, according to a May 2010 press release. The company is offering the lawn mower exchange program to help reduce emissions in the communities where stores are located, according to the release.

Go to PepBoys.com to find one of the 240 participating locations in Central and South Florida and call to confirm they have the mowers in stock before you go to get one.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Earth Day/Month (12), Eco shopping (18)

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April 22, 2012

Free coffee or tea at Starbucks for Earth Day on Sunday

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Bring in your own mug or travel cup and get a free hot or iced coffee or tea at participating Starbucks stores for Earth Day on Sunday. (Visit our roundup of other earth-loving freebies, too.)

If you don't have a travel mug, buy one for 20 percent off, or ask for the free coffee to tea to be served in a ceramic mug in the store.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends Sunday.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Earth Day/Month (12), Free (607)

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Free reusable tote bag from Target for Earth Day

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In honor of Earth Day on Friday, April 22, Target is giving out free, reusable tote bags on Sunday, April 22. (Visit our roundup of other earth-loving freebies, too.)

Did you know Target gives you 5 cents off your bill for every reusable bag used?

Click here for the deal. The offer is while supplies last.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and get mobile alerts: Text DEALS to 23539.

POSTED IN: Deal of the Day (299), Earth Day/Month (12), Eco shopping (18)

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Origins giving away free full-sized moisturizers (up to $46 value) on Earth Day

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In honor of Earth Day on Sunday, Origins is giving away free, full-sized moisturizers valued at up to $46. (Visit our roundup of other earth-loving freebies, too.)

Bring an old skin care container and the form at the link below to any Origins retail, department store counters or Sephora stores and trade for the oil-free Starting Over, valued at $46, or a tube of white-tea infused A Perfect World With SPF 25, which retails for $39.50.

The award-winning moisturizers by this Earth-loving brand are packed with antioxidants. Plus, empty trade-ins will be recycled or responsibility converted into energy through the Return to Origins Recycling Program.

Click here to print the form. Offer is while supplies last on Sunday only.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Beauty Products (184), Earth Day/Month (12), Free (607)

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Earth Day: Celebrate the planet with freebies and treats on Saturday and Sunday

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We love the planet and earth-friendly freebies, so we've rounded up goodies you can score in honor of Earth Day, which is celebrated on Sunday, April 22.

Free entrance to Everglades National Park and 99 other U.S. Parks through April 29.

Origins: Choose one of two free full-sized moisturizes on Sunday (up to $46 value) with form and trade-in of any brand of skin care product or jar at stores and counters, while supplies last.

Verizon: Buy a phone or trade-in an old device and Verizon will plant a tree; through Arpil 26.

Nordstrom: Bring a reusable mug to Nordstrom Coffee Bar and get a free cup of coffee or tea on Sunday.

Target: Get a free eco-friendly tote on Sunday, while supplies last.

Disney Store:is giving away free reusable shopping bags on Friday when you bring in five plastic shopping bags for recycling. One per guest, while supplies last.

Anthropologie: Children's Arts & Crafts for kids ages 5-10 years old. Sunday: 11 to 3 p.m. at Linconld Road Mall in Miami Beach; Noon to 2 p.m. at the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens; noon to 4 p.m. at Avenutra Mall. RSVP to store recommended.

Starbucks: Get free coffee or tea when you bring your own travel mug to stores on Sunday.

Pep Boys: Trade-in an old working gas mower for free or discounted Greenworks lawnmowers in Central and South Flroida stores.

G-Oil Motor Oil: Get a free 5-quart bottle of synthetic G-Oil motor oil with a rebate, a $26 value. Purchase by Sunday.

Free exterior house paint: Broward and Palm Beach counties' paint recycling programs offer free paint in year-round programs.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: Download free "Earth Day Take Home Kit" for kids that includes games, tips and other actions you can take to protect the earth.

Recycling events: Recycle electronics and office equipment at Brandsmart USA, HHGregg and Staples stores through Sunday. (Staples offers the sevice every day of the year.)

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Earth Day/Month (12), Free (607), Free With Rebate (20)

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April 19, 2012

Sawgrass Mills expands shopping areas, adds stores

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Sawgrass Mills, the largest outlet mall in the United States, is getting even bigger.

The shopping center in Sunrise with 350 plus stores is expanding The Colonnade Outlets section of the mall by 40,000-square-feet, according to a press release. The expansion is located east of Villagio. Canali, Tag Heuer, Tommy Bahama’s Outlet, Tumi, True Religion Brand Jeans and other retailers in that area will remain open while construction goes on.

Upscale retailers Prada and Giorgio Armani will relocate to this new wing once it is completed. Apparel retailers Diane Von Furstenberg and Robert Graham will also open outlet stores in the new wing.The expanded area is set to open later this year.

Sawgrass Mills continues to enjoy great success as shoppers from around the world enjoy its unparalleled mix of stores,” said Luanne Lenberg, vice president and general manager at Sawgrass Mills in a news release. “This retail expansion will only enhance our world-famous shopping and add to the number of exclusive stores found at Sawgrass Mills.”

The expansion of The Colonnade Outlets follows the 140,000-square-foot renovation of the south side of the property, which children’s attraction, Wannado City, used to fill until January 2011. The space is being transformed to allow more retailers to open by this summer, the news release said.

South Florida’s first ever Steve Madden outlet store will join Columbia Sportswear Outlet, Volcom and relocating Forever 21 and Calvin Klein in this new area. The expanded space will connect this area of the mall to The Colonnade Outlets with a clear, landscaped path for shoppers to follow.

Other new retailers to the mall include a second location from Michael Kors, a bareMinerals location, the expansion of the Levi’s Outlet Store, and Talbots, Greg Norman, Old Navy and California Pizza Kitchen in The Oasis.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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Rebate: Free 5-quart bottle of G-Oil motor oil ($26 value)

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Love the planet and get a 5-quart bottle of G-Oil motor oil for free with a rebate. That's a $26 value.

The biodegradable, synthetic motor oil, made by Florida-based Green Earth Technologies, is sold at Walmart stores for $26.

Buy a jug of G-Oil 5W 30, fill out and mail the rebate form with the UPC barcode from the back label with the register receipt dated by May 6to get your money back. Rebates must be postmarked by June 1.

Click here for the rebate form. The offer ends on April 22.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Deal of the Day (299)

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Walmart breaks ground on new center in North Lauderdale

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North Lauderdale residents are getting a bigger and better Walmart.

City officials will gather at the future site of a Walmart Supercenter at 7900 W. McNab Rd., in North Lauderdale Thursday at 10 a.m. for a groundbreaking ceremony. The new Walmart will nearly double the size of the next nearest Walmart store in the city.

The new store is set to open in January 2013.

The new Walmart Supercenter will feature a grocery store, garden department and a drive-thru pharmacy. City officials worked with Walmart to create a different outer facade than most other Walmart buildings, which includes awnings, trellis and pedestrian walkways, according to a press release. The building also incorporated environmentally sustainable building materials into the design, the release said.

The space will have 15 out parcels available for development at a later time.

“We have been working with Walmart for the past five years and are looking forward to having the supercenter in the city,” said North Lauderdale Mayor Jack Brady in a press release. “The store will benefit our residents and we are also ecstatic that it will generate approximately 80 to 100 new jobs here.”


Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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April 18, 2012

Portrait studios inside major retailers closing in South Florida

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Wave bye-bye, baby.

The portrait studios inside the Lauderhill Babies R Us stores closed Saturday, the latest professional photo studios to turn off the lights.

A clerk at the Lauderhill store said only three studios would remain in Florida: Pembroke Pines and two locations in Miami-Dade. A media spokesperson for CPI Corp. could not be reached for comment.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that St. Louis-based CPI Corp. is closing 124 underperforming Kiddie Kandids portrait studios inside Babies R Us stores nationwide. Most of the closed studios weren’t meeting minimum sales requirements.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch also reported that CPI - which also owns the studios at Buy Buy Baby, Sears and Walmart - was closing 346 Walmart studios across the country. The portrait studio operator has suffered a number of blows in recent months following poor financial results, including the transfer of its stock from the New York Stock Exchange to the over-the-counter market.

Other studios are closing as well. The Sun Sentinel reported Target portrait studios are closing 35 of their 183 locations nationwide. That includes the only two in Broward County, in Lauderhill and Deerfield Beach. Both will close April 29 and photos taken that day will be mailed to customers’ homes. There aren’t any portrait studios in Palm Beach County.

Kelvin Miller, spokesman for Lifetouch - the company that runs the Target studios as well as the studios at Olan Mills and JC Penney - said it's "eliminating stores that are underperforming."

Story by Lisa J. Huriash, Sun Sentinel

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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April 17, 2012

IKEA catalog now available online

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IKEA shoppers don't have to wait to get their catalogs in the mail anymore.

The Swedish home furnishings retailer now offers an online version of their annual catalog. The catalog book provides shoppers with an up-to-date listing of items for sale and their prices.

The digital catalog is also available for iPhone, Android and iPad for free.

There are more than 320 IKEA stores in 39 countries, including 38 stores in the U.S. The nearest South Florida IKEA is in Sunrise at 151 NW 136th Ave.


Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Justine Griffin on Twitter@SunBizGriffin and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Shopping News (152)

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Starbucks Petites: 2 for $2 through Sunday

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Take two, they’re small.

Get two Petites for $2 at Starbucks coffee shops through Sunday.

The tiny treats are perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up and come in under 200 calories. Pick from cute cake pops in three flavors, Salted Caramel Sweet Squares, or four new dessert flavors: Sugar Walnut and Chocolate Hazelnut Tarts and little Apple and Cherry Pies.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends on Sunday, April 22.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Deal of the Day (299)

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Tax Day treats and freebies on Tuesday

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Nothing is certain but death, taxes and freebies on Tax Day!

Here's a roundup of free stuff -- from meals to massages -- you can score on Tuesday, April 17, which is the deadline for filing Federal Income Tax returns. Get yours to the post office before mail is collected at 9 p.m.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgArby's: Free curly fries from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. with a coupon. Plus, get a chance to win $5,000 in tax relief.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgBoston Market: Get a free meal with purchase of another meal and a drink with a coupon.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgBob Evans: $3 off $10 purchase with a coupon. Dine-in only at Central Florida locations; expires April 25.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgChilis: Free appetizer or dessert with entree purchase with coupon; expires April 18

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgCinnabon: Get two free Cinnabon Bites from 6 to 8 p.m. at participaing stores.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgEntertainment 2012 Books: Tax Day Sale on Central and South Florida editions of the coupon books for $10.40 through Tuesday.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgHallmark: Free, personalized animated Tax Day e-card reminder.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgHydro Massage: Get a free massage through April 30 at Central and South Florida locations. Must make an appointment.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgHooters: Get 20 boneless wings for $9.99 at participating restaurants.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgMaggie Moos and Marble Slab Creamery: Free scoop of frozen yogurt from 4 to 7 p.m. at participating shops.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgMcDonald's: Buy one Quarter Pounder With Cheese or Big Mac and get one of the same for a penny at participating South Florida restaurants.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgMyFreeTaxes.com: Website helps you find free tax preparers in South Florida to file an extension.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgOffice Depot: Free 5 pounds of document shredding ($4.95 value) with a coupon; expires April 28.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgPanda Express: Free order of Shanghai Angus Steak with a coupon through Facebook.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpg P.F. Chang's: Save 15 percent on your total check.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpg R.A. Sushi: Tax Day happy hour specials on tapas and drinks from 3 p.m. to closing. With locations in Pembroke Pines, Palm Beach Gardens and Miami.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgSeattle's Bests Coffee: Free 1.75 ounch samples through Facebook.

taxesdollarsignblogx.jpgSonic: Half-priced drinks and slushes at particpating Drive-Ins.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and sign up for Deals text alerts.

POSTED IN: Taxes (4)

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April 16, 2012

Pollo Tropical accepts Google Wallet mobile pay app

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Pollo Tropical patrons can now pay with their phones instead of their wallets when dining at the restaurants in South Florida.

The Miami-based restaurant chain now accepts payments from the Google Wallet smartphone platform for all purchases, whether it be to dine in, take out or drive thru.

Google Wallet stores payment information on your phone and access it via an app that can be used anywhere MasterCard PayPass is accepted. No usage fees apply.

CVS, Einstein Bagels and 7-Eleven stores in South Florida also accept Google Wallet.

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Need a Tax Day extension? Website helps you find free tax preparers in South Florida

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If you haven't readied your taxes yet or need to file an extension, there are free options available in South Florida to get the job done. Federal income taxes must be filed by midnight on Tuesday.

First, if you or your family earned under $50,000 in 2011, you're eligible to get free tax preparation and filing -- in person and online -- through MyFreeTaxes.com.

The site lists by zip code South Florida offices offering free in-person tax preparation. Or text TAXES “Your Zip Code” to 91011 to find a location. The site lists locations offering services as part of the Internal Revenue Services' Volunteer Income Tax Assistant program (VITA).

“People can see if they qualify for EITC (Earned Income Tax Credits), child tax credits, and any other IRS credits that might result in getting money back when you file your federal tax return,” said Magaly Prezeau, CEO of the Community Access Center in Miramar. “This especially benefits the non-English speaking communities and the elderly.”

Or, opt to use the online tool provided by H&R Block At Home to file electronically for free.

Another free option, for everyone in all income brackets, is offered by the IRS through FreeFile.IRS.gov. The site lets you choose from a list of free online software and filing options from companies that have agreed to abide by IRS rules of security and privacy.

Also, the "MyTaxBack Calculator" lets you check to see if you may qualify for Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The credit could increase the money you get back from Uncle Sam. According to WWW.IRS.gov, up to 25 percent of eligible families fail to claim the EITC each year which could result in a refund.

Need more time? File an extention through FreeForm or H&R Block. Filing an extension will give you an extra six months to file your return.

MyFreeTaxes.com is sponsored by the Walmart Foundation, One Economy and the United Way.

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Free 15-song Coachella All-Stars playlist

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Download a free, 15-song playlist featuring great Coachella Festival performers, past and present, from Google Play.

The offering culls a best-of list from the venerable California music festival, which kicked off in Indio this weekend. It features songs from headliners Radiohead and Snoop Dogg along with tracks from Swedish House Mafia, Blur, Gorillaz and others.

Click here for the deal. You must create a Google Play account to get the free music.

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Trade old music CDs for Amazon gift cards

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Turn your old music CDs into Amazon gift cards with the online retailer's trade-in program.

Search Amazon's CD trade-in database to see what your old CDs are worth. Then, ship the music to Amazon for free and in exchange, a gift card will be deposited into your account. Use it to purchase new CDs, vinyl records and MP3s.

Get $5 in credit for Madonna's "MDNA" album and $2.95 for "The Hunger Games: Songs from District 12 and Beyond." The database contains hundreds of thousands of titles in every genre of music, from alt to rock to pop and country.

Click here for the deal.
Trade-in items must be certain eligibility requirements for condition.

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Free house paint for Broward, Palm Beach County residents

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If Earth Day on Sunday has you thinking about recycling, here's how it can really pay off: Broward and Palm Beach County residents can get free exterior house paint. Here's how:

BROWARD COUNTY
Broward residents and non-profit organizations can get free high-quality exterior paint through the county’s “Paint it Broward” recycling program.

The Household Hazardous Waste Collection program offers residents up to 20 gallons of the re-blended latex paint, which comes in beige, gray, turquoise or terra cotta colors. The paint comes in five-gallon buckets which can cost as much as $100 each at the local home improvement store.

Collected through the recycling program, Broward offers the free paint to 22 municipalities whose public works departments in turn distribute paint to residents. Cities offering the paint include Fort Lauderdale, Davie, Coral Springs, Oakland Park, Plantation, Sunrise, Pembroke Pines, Pompano and Deerfield Beach, among others.
See the list of participating cities with phone numbers to get the paint.

Broward County recycles and distributes an average of 55,000 gallons of latex paint per year to residents, according to the county’s website.

PALM BEACH COUNTY
Residents can get free recycled house and trim paint through the Solid Waste Authority Recycled Paint Donation Program. Colors include beige, off-white, brown, blue and yellow, among other colors.

To qualify, homeowners must have a 2,500-square-foot home or less and fill out an application. The SWA office calculates the amount of paint needed based on home’s size, said Linda Moreno, community service specialist of Palm Beach County’s Solid Waste Authority. The free paint is a one-time donation from the county, she said.

The SWA also offers volunteer painters to residents in need the Paint Your Heart Out program.

“This income-based program is for qualifying elderly, disabled, veterans and low-income families with children with single-family homes,” Moreno said. “Our Adopt-a-Spot program allows volunteers to clean up litter in their communities, too. We supply the necessary tools.”

For info on the paint program or to get an application, call 561-697-2700 or vist SWA.org.

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April 15, 2012

Free pretzel from Auntie Anne's

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Get a coupon for a free pretzel from Auntie Anne's through Facebook.

Vist the fan page, click on the "Free Signature Pretzel" tab to get your printable coupon good for a free pretzel when you buy oneat participating locations.

There are shops inside the malls at Galleria in Fort Lauderdale, Westfield Broward, Coral Square, Town Center in Boca Raton and Boynton Beach and Orlando Mall, among others.

Click here for the deal. The coupon expires on April 25.

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Free breakfast at McDonald's for students taking FCAT on Monday

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McDonald's restaurants will be offering a free hot breakfast to Florida public school students in grades 3 through 11 taking the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) on Monday, April 16.

From 6 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., kids can get a free Egg McMuffin, Apple Dippers, milk or a small orange juice at participating restaurants. Children 15 and younger must be accompanied by an adult.

More than 800 Florida restaurants are participating, with more than 175 offering the promo in South Florida.

This is the third year the chain has offered the FCAT promotion. In 2011, more than 120,000 students got free meals before taking the test, which is administered through April 27.

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Sawgrass Mills offers free coupon book with $500 in savings on Sunday

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Sawgrass Mills in Sunrise is giving away free “Super Saver Sundays” coupon books with $500 in special savings each Sunday in in April.

The coupons include:
$20 off of a purchase of $100 or more at Bloomingdale’s Outlet Store
20 percent off of a purchase of $40 or more at Carter’s
20 percent off of a single full-priced item at Juicy Couture
15 percent off of a single item at Kate Spade New York
10 percent off of the entire check at Johnny Rockets
$5 off of your purchase of $35 or more at The LEGO Store

Print the voucher from the link below and exchange it for the free coupon book at guest services on Avenue 2 or 3.

Click here for the deal. Coupon books will be offered on April 15, 22 and 29.

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April 14, 2012

Free popcorn at AMC Theatres through Sunday

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Get a free small popcorn at AMC Theatres with a coupon on Facebook. No concession stand purchase is necessary.

Like the AMC Theatres page and click the "Free Popcorn" tab to get your "Tax Relief Offer" for the free, buttery snack.

Click here for the deal. The coupon expires Sunday, April 15.

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POSTED IN: Facebook (131), Free (607), Movies (49)

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April 13, 2012

Free 30-day trial of 'Final Cut Pro X' from Apple

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Apple is offering a free 30-day trial of "Final Cut pro X" for Mac.

Test drive the 10.0.4 version of the video-editing software. If you have a previous version, you can use the latest update for an additional 30 days. The new software costs $299 from the Mac App store on Apple.com.

Click here for the deal. Minimum system requirements are detailed on the sign-up form.

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Free home energy workshops with free $100 tool kit through April

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Here's a bright idea to celebreate Earth Month: Zap high energy bills at free home energy workshops being held in Fort Lauderdale through April.

During the two-hour Smart Watts Home Energy Saver Workshops, you'll learn how to save up to 30 percent on electric and water bills by making a few simple changes that are as easy as screwing in a light bulb.

Here's the schedule:

6 p.m. Wednesday, April 18: Museum of Discovery and Science, 401 SW 2nd St., Fort Lauderdale

Noon on April 21: Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, 3109 E. Sunrise Blvd. Fort Lauderdale

Noon on April 22: Museum of Discovery and Science, 401 SW 2nd St.,Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312

Noon on April 23: Earth Day Celebration, Little Green Library (Suite 102)
1033 NW 6 St (Sistrunk Blvd.), Fort Lauderdale

10:30 a.m. April 26: The Art Institute (Room 321), 1799 SE 17th St.

4 p.m. April 28: Tyrone Bryant Library, 2230 NW 21St Ave., Fort Lauderdale

Workshops are open to the public, but only Fort Lauderdale homeowners, renters and small business owners who attend get a free $100 tool kit (with proof of residency). They're also eligible for residents and business in Fort Lauderdale $1,000 rebates, explained at the workshop. Learn more about the city's Smart Watts Energy Rebate program with qualifying home improvements using Energy Star products.

Click here to register for a workshop or call 954-713-0930 for information.

Note: Tool kit contents are subject to change.

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April 12, 2012

iPic Theater taking shape in Boca Raton

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The unique look of the new iPic Theater in Mizner Park is turning heads.

The upscale movie theater set to open in May is still under construction. But the exterior is starting to take shape. A deep cherry wood frame covers one corner of the building. Several brightly colored and uniquely designed mosaic tiles decorate the hardwood panels.

A combination of wood, glass and metal complete the outdoor design and entrance to the theater.

This new look for Mizner Park is also a unique design unlike any other iPic Theater, said Hamid Hashemi, president and CEO of iPic Theaters.

“We are extremely excited to introduce the concept to marketplace and to see how the public will react to what we have in store for them at both iPic Theaters Mizner Park as well as our independent restaurant concept Tanzy launching this summer,” Hashemi said.

Hashemi declined to comment on the cost of the theater.

Boca Raton and Hallandale Beach will open new iPic Theaters this year. The theaters will offer restaurant and lounge services, electric reclining seats and a premium level seating option that comes with unlimited popcorn.

Moviegoers may pay $15-$25 for admission, although final prices have not been set.

In Boca Raton, the space that used to be a Sunrise Cinemas location will be transformed into a 43,000-square-foot, two-story iPic. The eight-screen theater will include an adjacent 7,000-square-foot restaurant and bar concept called Tanzy.

About 300 jobs will be created when both locations open, Hashemi said. Applicants can applications to miznerpark@ipic.com or just visit ipictheaters.com.

Do you like the look of the new theater? Tell us what you think in this poll.

Photo by Carline Jean, Sun Sentinel.

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April 11, 2012

Albertsons closing 13 stores in Florida

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The Albertsons grocery store in Oakland Park will soon be one of only four remaining stores in Florida after the national chain closes 13 other locations by the early summer.

Albertsons announced that it will close 13 stores in Florida, affecting a total of 1,100 people who are currently employed with the company, according to Christine Wilcox, spokeswoman for Albertsons.

Liquidation sales will begin as early as May, and stores are expected to close by June.

The nearest closing Albertsons store to South Florida is in Port St. Lucie, according to company records.

The Albertsons location in Key West will close by the end of April, earlier than most other stores.

The company will also shutter a distribution center in Plant City.

Four stores will remain open in the state, including the store at 950 E. Commerical Blvd. in Oakland Park. Three other stores in Central Florida and the Tampa area will also remain open.
It is unknown how many employees work at the Oakland Park store.

“We evaluate our store base frequently, but chose to follow recommendations that will allow us to focus on our healiest stores in Florida,” Wilcox said.

Albertsons is a discount grocer with stores across the country. An industry publication, Supermarket News, ranked the grocer No. 35 on a list of top 75 retailers and wholesalers in 2012, based on annual sales. Albertsons reported estimated sales of $3.9 billion in February.


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Free large Coke in reusable cup at Baja Fresh Mexican Grill

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Get a free large Coca-Cola in a reusable cup with purchase of any entree at Baja Fresh Mexican Grill with a coupon.

Baja Fresh says it is on a mission to save the planet, one cup at a time. Bring the cup back again and again and enjoy 99-cent refills.

Click here for the deal. The coupon expires on April 26.

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POSTED IN: FOOD SPECIALS (140), Free With Purchase (99)

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April 9, 2012

Kids eat free at TooJays Gourmet Deli through May

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Kids eat free at TooJays Gourmet Deli in April and May.

The New York style delicatessens are offering free meals for kids under 10 after 4 p.m. with each adult entree purchased.

The kids' menu offers hot dogs and hamburgers, grilled cheese, chicken strips and tuna melts and more.

Also, TooJays is offering a traditional Passover menu. Dine in or order ahead to enjoy at home during the holiday.

If you're looking for a good Matzo Ball soup, TooJays is the place. Also, the desserts are to die for with Killer Cake at the top of the list. The super-fudgy confection is made with four types of chocolate.

Click here for the deal. There are locations all over Central and South Florida.

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POSTED IN: FOOD SPECIALS (140), Free (607), Restaurants (12)

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April 7, 2012

Coupon: $11 for bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken

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Here's a finger-lickin'-good deal for Easter weekend: Get a bucket of chicken for $11 from KFC with a coupon good on Saturday and Sunday.

Get 10 pieces of the colonel's chicken in original recipe, extra crispy or grilled at participating restaurants.

Click here for the deal.

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Coupon: $7 off HoneyBaked Ham for Easter

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Save $7 on a HoneyBaked Ham for your Easter Feast with a coupon. Also, we have a coupon for $3 off a mini-ham, too. Easter is Sunday, April 8.

Make an online reservation to pick up the ham at your local store to save time, too.

Click here for the deal. The coupons expire on April 7 and are one per person.

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$10 off Smithfield Spiral Hams with free pineapples at BJ's Wholesale Club

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BJ's Wholesale Club is offering a coupon for $10 off a Smithfield Spiral Ham and free pineapple, valued at $1.99, when you purchase four eligible products.

If you're not a club member, we have a free 60-day trial membership pass you can activate at the service desk.

Grab the coupon, which expires on April 7, as you enter the store and then purchase four mix-or-match products to save on the ham, which costs $1.99 a pound. Choose from Fress Express Chopped Romaine, Berkley & Jensen Shrimp, Land O'Lakes Butter, Keebler Club Crackers, Uncle Ben's Long Grain Rice, Wish-bone Italian Dressing, Wellsley Farms Tiramisu or Tyson Anytizers. The offer is one per member.

Click here to get a free 60-day trial membership that expires on July 4.

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POSTED IN: Coupons (789), Free (607), Wholesale Clubs (4)

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Get a free Coke at AMC Theaters with 'Titanic 3D' ticket, concession purchase


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If you're seeing "Titantic 3D" at AMC Theaters, get a free small coke with a concession purchase using a coupon good on Saturday only.

Click here for the deal.

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April 6, 2012

Sawgrass Mills offers free shuttles from SoFla hotels on Easter

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South Florida tourists can hop on free shuttles to Sawgrass Mills to score bargains on Easter Sunday .

The world's largest outlet mall in Sunrise, opening for the first time from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Easter, will offer free bus service to and from the mall at 20 hotels beginning at 10 a.m. Also, free coupon books with $500 in savings at the mall will be offered to shuttle riders.

Here's the schedule:

Fort Lauderdale beach: Pickups start at 10 a.m., 1 and 4 p.m. at Embassy Suites, Harbor Beach Marriott, Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach, Hyatt Pier Sixty-Six, Sheraton Fort Lauderdale, W Hotel, Westin Beach and the Atlantic. Shuttles depart Sawgrass at 3, 6 and 8:30 p.m.

Hollywood: Pickups begin at 10 a.m., 12:45 and 3:30 at the Acqualina, Crown Plaza, Marriott Hollywood Beach, Trump Tower II and Westin Diplomat. Shuttles depart Sawgrass at 2:30, 5:15 and 8:30 p.m.

Miami-Dade: Pickups start at 10 a.m., 1 and 4 p.m. at the Epic, Four Seasons, both JW Marriotts, the Mandarin, Contrad and Viceroy. Shuttles depart Sawgrass at 2:45, 5:45 and 8:30 p.m.

Click here to see the list of hotels and the schedule.

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April 5, 2012

Lord & Taylor coming to Boca Raton later this year

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The rumors are true. Lord & Taylor will open a new store in Boca Raton later this year.

The upscale clothing and accessories retailer plans to open in the previous Robb & Stucky furniture store location in Mizner Park, according to city records.

A company spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

The 80,000-square-foot store is likely to open in the fall.

A Lord & Taylor outlet store opened at the Dolphin Mall in Miami in July 2011. It is the only other Lord & Taylor location in South Florida, according to the South Florida Business Journal.

In 2003, the company announced it would close 32 under-performing Lord & Taylor stores in 15 states and focus on its core markets. At that time, six stores remained in Florida.

The retailer pulled out of the Galleria mall in Fort Lauderdale in 2002 and at the Mall at Wellington Green and Fashion Mall in Plantation in 2003.

This would be the first full-line store opening since the earlier closures in South Florida.

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Free 5 pounds of document shredding at Office Depot ($4.95 value)

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Get five pounds of document shredding for free from Office Depot with a coupon. It's a $4.95 value.

One pound of paper is roughly 100 sheets or 1/2-inch stack. If you're cleaning out files for tax season, this is a great way to protect your sensitive personal information.

Click here for the deal. The coupon expires on April 28.

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April 4, 2012

Publix ranked as a top grocer by Consumer Reports

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Consumer Reports ranked Publix as one of the top grocers in the nation whereas Walmart ranked low on the list, according to a press release.

Publix ranked among other national grocers like Trader Joe’s and Wegmans with high ratings in clean shopping environments, good prices and quality products. The report surveyed 52 grocers total.

This isn’t the first time Publix has ranked high this year by shopper surveys. The Lakeland-based grocer topped the rankings released by the American Customer Satisfaction Index earlier this year.

Costco earned the highest marks for service, employee courtesy and checkout speed.

Consumer Reports is an independent product-testing organization that researches and rates thousands of products and services annually.

Walmart shoppers were reported a lack of open check out lanes, out-of-stock items, indifferent employees, spotty pricing and confusing layouts.


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April 3, 2012

Free ice cream cones at Ben & Jerry's on Tuesday

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Get a free scoop at Ben & Jerry's for Free Cone Day on Tuesday.

Score the cool treat from noon to 8 p.m. at participating shops as a thank you to customers and to celebrate 34 years of "scooping the chunkiest, funkiest ice cream."

The chain is also urging you to try its new Greek Frozen Yogurt which comes in four flavors. Don't have to twist my arm to try a Raspberry Fudge Chunk!

Click here for the deal and to find a location.

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April 2, 2012

McCormick & Schmick's restaurant closes in CityPlace

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McCormick & Schmick's closed its location at CityPlace in West Palm Beach over the weekend.

The seafood restaurant, which was housed in a space near Okeechobee Boulevard in between Sapodilla and Rosemary avenues, closed its doors after business hours on Saturday. The store opened in 2009, according to a Palm Beach Post article.

A sign in the restaurant's front window directs customers to Charley's Crab on South Ocean Boulevard in Palm Beach, another establishment opened by the same company, Landry's Inc.


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Free access to 1940 U.S. Census records on Ancestry.com

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Uncover details about your family by searching through newly released 1940 U.S. Census records for free on Ancestry.com.

The 1940 records were released by the National Archives on April 2. The website is currently uploading 3.8 million images of the records. You can search through more than a billion records from 1940 and years forward.

The genealogy website allows you to snoop through centuries of digital records to help establish a comprehensive family tree. Search collections of records, from military to census and voter lists, births, marriages and deaths, immigration, photos, newspapers and more. The database lets you learn details about occupation, citizenship and military service and more.

You also can sign up for a free 14-day trial and search all 6 billion records for free. A 12-month subscription costs $155.40.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends at midnight on April 10.

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Buy one, get one free at Subway in April

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Subway is offering a great deal form opening until 9 a.m. in April: Buy one six-inch sandwich, get another six-inch sandwich free at participating restaurants.

The chain offers made-to-order breakfast sandwiches on its menu, such as a Double Bacon Egg & Cheese, Steak, Egg & Cheese, Western Egg & Cheese, a Breakfast B.M.T. and muffin melts. Then, order a sub for lunch and bag it for free.

Click here for the deal. The offer ends on April 30.

Three ways to keep up with the latest deals: "Like" our Sentinel Deals page on Facebook; follow Doreen Christensen on Twitter@PrettyGoodIdeas and get mobile alerts: Text DEALS to 23539.

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April 1, 2012

Free Starbucks beverage with purchase of Tribute Blend

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Get a free Starbucks Tall beverage of your choice with purchase a bag of Tribute Blend, the chain's much loved seasonal roast.

Purchase a 16-ounce bag o' beans or a 12-pack of Starbucks VIA Veranda Blend and get any size beverage of your choosing.

Click here for the deal. The offer expires on Sunday, April 1.

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Free 16-by-20 wall portrait from Sears ($69.99 value)

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Get a free 16-by- 20 wall portrait valued at $69.99 from Sears Portrait Studio through Facebook.

Visit the Sears Portrait Studio fan page on Facebook and like the "Exclusive" tab to get the coupon for the free portrait. There is no additional sitting fee.

Visit SearsPortrait.com or call 1-888-767-8724 to make an appointment. There are locations all over Central and South Florida.

Click here for the deal. The offer expires on April 15 and is one per family.

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About the authors
Doreen Christensen has never paid full price for anything. If there is a way to save on something, she will find it and share how you can save, too. Doreen is a senior reporter covering consumer news, health, beauty and features for the online and print editions of the Sun Sentinel. A 32-year veteran of the newspaper, she previously was a senior copy editor on the universal copy desk. Doreen spends her time off hunting bargains, clipping coupons, gardening and traveling.

Justine Griffin covers retail and marine business for the Sun Sentinel. She is a Tampa Bay native who graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2010. After spending a year covering crime in St. Augustine, Fla., she moved to Fort Lauderdale and made the switch to business journalism. When she’s not writing, she’s riding horses and spending time with her whippet puppy, Josie.

Marcia Heroux Pounds is the Sun Sentinel's workplace columnist when she's not shopping for shoes. She also writes about small business, which allows her to visit many of South Florida's unique shops and boutiques.

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