Holiday shopping ramping up along the coast

Holiday shopping ramping up along the coast

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - With only days left until Christmas, shopping centers around the coast are seeing an uptick in sales as shoppers gear up for the big day.

Gulfport resident Patrick Leathers says with some time off from work, he's trying to knock out all of his Christmas shopping at Edgewater Mall before things get too hectic.

"I hate standing in line, fighting crowds and traffic," said Leathers. "It adds more stress to the season."

Despite that, he says he still likes to get to the mall to make his holiday purchases, even if it means dealing with the larger crowds.

"I'm shopping for my teenage son, using the phone to text pics to the wife to try to get ideas," he said.

People who have worked at the mall for years, like Terry Powell, say things will only get busier with people taking off for the holidays over the next week.

"Business is booming today and the weather's cold, which brings people out," said Powell. "And it's Friday, so that's good, and we're getting ready for the weekend which will be even be bigger."

Powell says he's been monitoring business at the mall and has noticed some of the popular gift items that are trending.

"Boots are always hot this time of year and the cold weather helps with long sleeve goods," he said. "Hoverboards are still popular, as well."

With a week to go until Christmas, shoppers like Leathers say they're attempting to get it all done at just the right time.

"Usually a week or two before Christmas, people change their minds on the gifts they want so we try to make sure we get them what they like," said Leathers.

Powell says although he's already pleased with revenue this holiday season, he's still anticipating Christmas Eve, when the most frenzied shoppers will be out purchasing big ticket items.

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