Downtown Stores Prepare for Holiday Season

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Holiday sales can determine the financial success of countless small local stores.

"For many businesses Christmas time is where you make it or break it, and you do three month's business in one month," said Morris Jewelry Owner.

They may not open hours early, but they still have deals, and hope their charm invites customers looking for something off the beaten path of department stores.

"Last year we were extremely successful, and we hope for that same success this year. People are looking for something special and unique when they're thinking about giving gifts, and that's what we offer," said Zingarella Owner Liz Bernard.

The season can be even more important for newer businesses.

"It's definitely a good bump in those sales that sustains you through the slower months... because when you head into the beginning of the year, it falls off, so that holiday push really carries you through that," said Bernard.

These businesses plan to draw in customers after they've been up all night shopping and want a more relaxed atmosphere.

"We feel like most of the people are going to be going down to Scottsville Road to get a TV for a nickel, and that's okay, but then on Small Business Saturday, I'm going to double the deals I had the day before," said Candle Makers on the Square Manager Stephen Park.

Small business Saturday, promoted by American Express, is something some of these businesses plan to take advantage of, offering deals on Saturday too, after shoppers recuperate from black Friday.

Shops say they look forward to not only the sales on black Friday, but Downtown Lights Up, which will take place the next week when the mayor holds the Christmas lights ceremony, and vendors are able to set up inside Fountain Square Park throughout the day on Nov 30.

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