Retailers ready for last-minute shoppers

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 23, 2006

Local retailers are re-stocking the shelves, bringing in extra help and anticipating a merry and bright time as the last hurrah of holiday shopping arrives this weekend.

With Christmas falling on a Monday this year, The Pineapple downtown is opening on Sunday

to take care of those last-minute shoppers,

Store Manager Katrina Scofield said on Thursday.

&#8220We'll be open our normal hours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. But we will also open our doors from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Christmas Eve. As always, we offer complimentary gift wrapping for your purchases,” Scofield said.

Just across the street from The Pineapple is Mr. Style, which is slated to open from noon until 6 p.m. for shoppers' convenience on Christmas Eve.

Another downtown business, Special Finds by Janice, will be closed on Christmas Eve. However, owners Johnny and Janice Cole promise to stick around Saturday, Dec. 23, &#8220until the last customer is taken care off.”

The store's official hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, but Janice Cole said the store has remained open as late as 6 to 7 p.m. several evenings this week in order to take care of customers.

&#8220It has been a good week for us so far. We are expecting a busy day on Saturday.”

Prissy Britches, another downtown store, will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 23, and will be closed both Sunday and Monday, owner Cheryl Gates said.

&#8220We are hoping for a good turnout Saturday as people wind up their Christmas shopping for their little ones,” Gates said.

Both Prissy Britches and Special Finds by Janice also offer complimentary gift-wrapping.

Across town at the Greenville Wal-Mart Super Center, Store Manager Bill McCrary, in anticipation of last-minute crowds, joked his staff &#8220better get their roller skates on.”

&#8220We've had a good season and are looking forward to a good weekend. We want everyone to have a merry, merry Christmas and to start it and end it with Wal-Mart,&uot; McCrary said.

The store will be open until 6 p.m. on Sunday, Christmas Eve and will re-open Tuesday, Dec. 26 at 6 a.m. for the ever-popular after-Christmas clearance sale.

&#8220We'll be here and ready for those bargain hunters come Tuesday morning.”

At Fred's Discount Store in Gateway Plaza, Manager Randy Beeson said he is hoping the rainy weather in the forecast will not keep shoppers away this weekend.

&#8220However, we are lucky here because we have a good canopy in front of our shopping center. Folks can come, park in one spot, shop in several stores and stay out of the rain,” Beeson said.

Fred's will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday. On Christmas Eve, the store will open at 12:15 p.m. instead of the normal Sunday opening time of 1 p.m. It is slated to close at 6 p.m. Sunday.

&#8220We've had a good season; it hasn't been a huge increase over last year, but it's been a substantial one,” Beeson said.

The Fred's store manager is sold on the benefits of hometown shopping this Christmas season.

&#8220I want to remind everybody that not just Fred's, but Gateway Plaza itself, is a great place to shop for your holiday needs. We've got convenient parking, a great selection, fast service and friendly, helpful folks. Gateway is the best place to shop in Butler County.”