Local Stores Ready For Holiday Shoppers

9 years 7 months 3 weeks ago Monday, November 15 2010 Nov 15, 2010 Monday, November 15, 2010 11:16:29 PM CST November 15, 2010 in News
COLUMBIA - Locally-owned retail shops said Monday they are ready to compete with big corporations for the early holiday shopping push. Those local shops are already getting holiday shoppers thanks to their efforts to sell niche items. Black Friday, the biggest shopping day for some, isn't as big of a day for local stores.

Allen's Flowers said it gets a lot of customers outside of Columbia, and many of its clients want their flowers and items for decorating before Thanksgiving.

The flower shop said it doesn't have sales before Black Friday like the big department and corporate stores. It does stay open for Black Friday and typically gets its customers during the afternoon.

"We get busy after they [shoppers] go to those mass marketing things," Darla Manley said.

Elly's Couture will open its doors at 8 a.m. on Black Friday along with 20 other downtown Columbia shops. Elly's owner said the store uses promotions and treat offerings like free hot cocoa for the Black Friday morning shoppers.

"Stores definitely work together whether they want to open up earlier or you know, hey, let's maybe do a cocktail or something or hot cocoa to drive people down at 8:00 a.m. when it's cold outside," Elly Bethune said.

Big gift items for the clothing store are purses, jewelry and shoes. The owner said it sells these items in bulk for holiday shoppers.

Kent's Floral Gallery also gets many of its customers through those wanting to decorate before Thanksgiving.

All three shops are hoping for a better holiday season than last year's. They all have already seen an influx of holiday shoppers before Turkey Day.

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