Businesses Cite Customers as Reason for Staying Open on Easter

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COLUMBIA - Several downtown businesses posted "closed" signs on their doors Sunday because of the Easter holiday. But other businesses said they have important reasons for staying open.

"We're open on Easter to cater to the church crowds," said Pickleman's Shift Manager Clayton Bunkley. "Or anyone who's going out to any celebrations."

Pickleman's was one of many dining places open Sunday. In the downtown area, more restaurants, snack places and specialty food and drink stores were open than retail stores.

Elly's Couture was not among those closed for Easter Sunday. Assistant Manager Tiffany Van Horne said the store wanted to stay open for the loyal shoppers who may have company.

"There's a lot of people that come to Columbia from out of town, out of state, and we have a lot of dedicated shoppers that, even on holidays, want to come in and see what our latest products are," Van Horne said.

While some open stores closed early Sunday evening, Bunkley said the evening brings a new crowd.

"Later tonight we're catering towards the college crowd," Bunkley said. "Students coming home who might be hungry late at night."

Stores with signs that said "Closed for Easter," or anything similar, had their reasons for closing, too. For instance, one sign told onlookers the store was closed so employees could spend time with their families.