The past weekend saw two familiar sights in Atwater Village that herald the arrival of the holiday season. On Sunday, a crew of workers and volunteers equipped by a truck-mounted lift began stringing lights and decorating an 80-foot high Redwood tree that will be illuminated on Dec. 6 during the 21st annual Atwater Village Tree Lighting Ceremony. Meanwhile, a few blocks away off Los Feliz Boulevard, another holiday ritual was taking place as the first of the Black Friday bargain hunters began to line up outside Best Buy for post Thanksgiving deals. In fact, 21-year-old Arotin Arakelian of Tujunga was the first to line up last Friday. Unlike previous years, the Best Buy manager would not let the Black Friday shoppers set up tents during the day, said Arakelian, who along with a small band of bargain hunters had brought out umbrellas to shield themselves from bright sunshine.
While the decorating and lighting of the Atwater Village tree is more traditional, the Best Buy campers seem to get more attention. Arakelian, who plans to purchase items to resell later in the year, estimated that he has been interviewed at least ten times since Friday. “I was on KISS Fm this morning.”