Halloween is big business for coast retailers

By Doug Walker - bio | email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Despite tough economic times, ghosts and goblins have the cash registers ringing at Party City in Gulfport, one week before Halloween.  Even on a Monday morning, when it's usually quiet as a graveyard, there was a steady stream of customers.

One of those customers is Gindy Taranto.  She and her husband are not spooked when it comes spending money on scary stuff.

"I would say we spent roughly about $300 already this year on decorations and costumes," Taranto said. "I mean, on candy alone I know we spent $100, just because we have so many trick or treaters."

Even with more and more people watching over their good time budgets, it's hard to ignore the kids on October 31st. Micheala Floyd said she has two young ones at home.

"I have a three-year-old and a one-year-old," Floyd said. "We go through the local neighborhoods and to the malls and the little parties."

Renee Bearden is the store manager. She spends her days stocking shelves and rounding up costumes.  As for why people open up their wallets for all things scary, she has her own theory.

"I just believe people are enjoying being together," Bearden said. "Schools are having parties, it's a great time to celebrate."

She said it's also a good way to leave your troubles behind.

"You just escape for a little while, you can actually become a different character for the day."

One thing that isn't different this year in the willingness of people to open up their wallets to have fun for one frightening day.

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