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Filene's Basement Annual Wedding Gown Sale - Get Your Running Shoes Ready

Ready, set, shop! It's the annual Filene's Basement Wedding Gown sale and if you've never experienced one, be prepared.

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Brides will bring their family and friends and camp out for this annual event when the infamous Filene's Basement located at 17651 Biscayne Boulevard in Aventura, in conjunction with WeddingWire.com, the nation's leading wedding technology site, holds their annual you-can't-beat-the-prices event.

They call it the "Running of the Brides" because when the doors open at 8 a.m. on Friday, January 18, 2010, hundreds of brides and their posses will descend on the store for this one-day event to save hundreds or thousands of dollars on more than 1,300 brand name and designer gowns priced from $249 to $699. And since their original tags are still on the gowns you can instantly calculate your savings.

This event has been a part of the legendary Filene's Basement's framework since 1949 and attracts massive crowds of bargain hunting brides at this worldwide phenomenon held around the country at their popular discount locations.

A few of the lucky brides in attendance will also have a chance to win the wedding gown of their dreams. To register for the contest and learn more about the event, click here.

The store will be open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. but if you plan to attend, arrive to save your place on line late Thursday night or in the wee small hours of Friday morning.

Shoppers come in costume for fun or in matching brightly-colored attire and crazy hats so they can easily find their group. Often brides will stake a spot in the store while her team goes out to do battle to grab dresses they think will please the bride or more likely, they'll just grab what they can. And while she's changing into her options, her team will fight to find her more dresses.

Don't be surprised if the moment you discard a choice someone with another bride tries to snatch it away. This isn't so much of a sale as it is hand-to-hand combat. So the more people you have with you to hunt, gather and secure the gowns you want to try on, the better. And leave Granny at home for this one. It truly can get more than a bit rough in the battle of the budget brides while trying to save big bucks.

Smart brides will give her team members photos of her preferred style but will encourage them to grab what they can. Some will even hoist signs showing the size dress they're looking for and do a gown swap with other shoppers.

Don't worry if you find the gown you want but it's a little big. You can always get it altered. Buying a too small gown will result in additional expenses on top of normal alternation costs as your seamstress or tailor tries to find matching or coordinating fabric to let the gown out or to lengthen it.

Filene's will accept cash, checks or credit cards once you're found your bridal bargain.

So get there early, go big and go home with your bridal bounty.

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