Forget Black Friday, check out these holiday goods in your neighborhood

If capitalism is the enlarged heart of America's economy, Black Friday is its genital warts: Studies show about half of all people take advantage of deals to buy gifts for themselves, literal stampedes happen, people have murdered each other in checkout lines, and the parking lots of area malls make Trader Joe's seem about as bustling as the South Pole.

Dare we hope that this Frankenstein's monster of a retail event is on its way out? REI made headlines a few weeks ago when it announced it would be closing its doors on Black Friday in protest, suggesting instead that people spend the day outdoors.

Another good alternative? Shop local. There's plenty of opportunity to stay away from mega-retailers on Black Friday, plus Small Business Saturday follows right on its heels.

Starting at 9 a.m. on Friday, November 27, through 6 p.m. on Sunday, November 29, there's the Little Relics Shopping Extravaganza (908 21st Street). Customers will have access to unique, handmade jewelry, ceramics, clothing and art, and the first 10 customers each day get a free gift. Head a few blocks over to the Scottish Rite Center (6151 H Street) on those same days from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. to hit up the Crocker Holiday Artisan Market, where you will likewise find handmade goodies, photo ops with Victorian Santa, live music and food from Ambrosia Cafe. Admission is $3-$6 and more information can be found at Even more artisanal pottery and ornaments can be found at the Indian Crafts and Holiday Fair on November 27 and 28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the California State Indian Museum (2618 K Street).

Lastly, you're going to need a drink after a bunch of shopping (or during, or instead of—this is no occasion for judging someone for drinking at noon on a weekday). New Helvetia Brewing Co. is hosting Black Brewery Friday from noon to midnight. Revelers can snag bites from Chando's Tacos and the Culinerdy Cruzer, boogie to live music from Jayson Angrove, Adrian Bellue, Banjo Fiddle and Guero, and be there for the unveiling and tasting of the newest Mystery Airship beer. Visit for more details.