**FILE** Customers browse at the annual BZB "Shop ‘til Ya Drop" Holiday Gift and Art Show.

Sponsored by BZB International

Yes, it has been confirmed! 

The annual BZB “Shop ‘til Ya Drop” Holiday Gift and Art Show will reopen for its 30th anniversary on Black Friday after being closed for two consecutive seasons because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

And the always “busy” businesswoman and founder of the highly-anticipated event, D.C.-based philanthropist Juanita “Busy Bee” Britton, said she can hardly contain her excitement.

“I’m thrilled that shoppers and many businesses who have been hanging on and doing their best to survive can see that I’m doing all I can to bring a sense of normalcy back to the industry,” Britton said.

 “In spite of the current turbulent economy, I receive hundreds of inquiries about the event – YES, they are coming back! And I’m pleased that shoppers will spend their hard-earned dollars with the artisans and entrepreneurs who will be featured,” she said while noting that about 22 of the 75 participating retailers have been with her since 1990. 

Britton, an unyielding advocate of the Buy Black Movement and the genius behind what’s been described as the “largest African-American Department Store on the East Coast,” said she’s poised to help all minority businesses make up for several years of lost revenue. 

“More than 41% of Black businesses nationwide had to close because of the pandemic,” Britton said. “Many are struggling but are surviving. I’ve been doing this show annually because I love my community and I want our businesses to thrive. But my ultimate goal remains to bring diverse groups of people together and persuade consumers to spend their dollars with Black businesses on quality merchandise.”

The “Shop ‘til Ya Drop” weekends, which attract thousands of shoppers from around the DMV and the country, kick off on Friday Nov. 25 with a 10 a.m. ribbon cutting led by “Busy Bee” who will be joined by special guests and leaders from the DMV’s political, business and social arenas. Even D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, who recently achieved the same success of former Mayor Marion Barry, being elected for a third term, both of whom have given their unwavering support of Britton and small businesses in the past, has been invited to join in the celebrations on Friday.

Busy Bee with work of sculptor Woodrow Nash

Shopping will take place on more than 100,000 square feet of space inside the Shiloh Family Life Center at 1510 9th Street NW, three blocks north of the Washington, D.C. Convention Center, with hours scheduled from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., Nov. 25 and 26, continuing every weekend of the Christmas holiday season through Christmas Eve, Dec. 24. 

“Where else can you find a warm holiday cultural atmosphere with a unique collective of jewelers, artists, interior designers, indigenous products, crafts from women’s cooperatives, woodcarvers, Black designers and DMV-based businesses such as Ida’s Idea Boutique, Shukri’s Goldsmiths, Kuumba Kollectibles Greeting Cards, Pyramid Books, Unitees – even psychologists and health technicians – all from throughout the African Diaspora?  Britton asked. 

“This is a celebration and we’re inviting everyone to come out and ‘Shop ‘til Ya Drop’ because it’s that time of year,” Britton said adding that admission to the event remains the same as it’s been for the past 30 years: A SMILE. 

And to express her thanks, she will give the first 100 people who come out on Black Friday $25 to ‘Shop ‘til Ya Drop!’ at the Holiday Gift and Art Show. 

“I want to bless others just as the Universe has blessed me,” she said.  

For more information, call 202-550-7060 or visit www.bzbinternational.com

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