• November 13, 2019
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Queens Chronicle

Hit a drugstore for gifts and supplies

Independent shops add that personal touch to the last couple weeks of your holiday shopping

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Posted: Thursday, December 13, 2018 10:30 am

It’s that time of year, and you may be surprised to find out to what extent your neighborhood pharmacies are getting into the seasonal spirit.

And we’re not talking cough syrup and flu shots.

Take, for instance, AJ’s Village Chemist on Metropolitan Avenue in Middle Village. Wreaths adorn the entranceway, a shelf-size Santa greets you from within, and there are just enough Christmas goodies for sale to fulfill your last-minute needs.

Edibles are always a welcome gift, and two-pound boxes of Stauffer’s Chocolaty Stars are ready for the buying. For your decorating needs, you can pick up light sets, a 6-foot LED Bell Garland, and maybe a holiday automatic night light, complete with a dusk-to-dawn light sensor.

Also available at this location, one of three under AJ’s umbrella (the other two being on Fresh Pond Road in Middle Village and on Woodhaven Boulevard in Rego Park) are Christmas stockings, suitable for hanging by the chimney with care, and, of course, plenty of stocking stuffers, aimed primarily at the youngsters in your life.

Seasonal headgear can keep you warm and looking good, and wrapping paper, tissue and ribbons are also available, as are holiday cards, at 50 percent off. And you can carry your purchases home in an assortment of colorful Christmas bags, all suitable for delivering your gifts to friends and family.

Cross Bay Chemist, located on Cross Bay Boulevard in Howard Beach, is also in the holiday swing of things, according to manager Marty Tisch.

For starters, the pharmacy is running a drawing for a $50 gift certificate at Bruno Ristorante, located nearby on Cross Bay Boulevard. The drawing will be held Dec. 22. No purchase is necessary to enter.

But, if you stop by the store, chances are you’ll find something to suit your end-of-year fancy.

Tisch indicated that right now there is a 25 percent off sale on all trim-a-tree items.

You’ll find shelves full of decorations, including mini-Christmas trees and Santas, suitable for really dressing up your residence for the holidays.

An assortment of wrapping paper and holiday boxes are available for your gift-giving needs, as well as decorative stockings, suitable for hanging around your fireplace.

And there are plenty of gift ideas from which to choose. For the youngsters, Cross Bay carries a large selection of toys, including board games, Play-Doh, dolls and model kits.

For the special person in your life, you’ll find all kinds of fragrances on sale.

And, of course, there are also lots of chocolate goodies, including, yes, Stauffer’s Chocolaty Stars, as well as a variety of Russell Stover candies, available in prewrapped gift packages, and the ever-popular Ferrero Rocher delights.

Chain stores may have a larger selection of gifts and other holiday-related items, but neighborhood stores like AJ’s and Cross Bay undoubtedly more than make up for that in the personal relationship they develop with customers.

And, perhaps best of all, the folks at AJ’s call themselves “The pharmacy you can trust,” promising “we will not be undersold!” while Tisch was quick to point out, “We pride ourselves on our reputation of having the best prices.”

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