Last Minute Holiday Shoppers Pack The Malls

They are dashing through the aisles, trying to fill their loved-ones' wishes. Procrastinators have taken over the Academy Sporting Goods store in Gulfport.

"It is very, very busy," said Eva Stockstill, Academy's Apparel Manager. "You got all your last-minute shoppers, people looking for that special gift and getting upset because you don't have everything that they want."

"Everybody seems to wear medium I guess," one man said, after searching the clothing racks for a Guy Harvey shirt.

Disappointed shoppers are determined not to go home empty-handed. Brothers, Lane and Ethan Parks of Gulfport, are hunting for the perfect gift for their mom.

"Sometimes it's not easy to shop," said nine-year-old Lane Parks. "Because sometimes the place is crowded."

When asked why he likes to shop on Christmas Eve, Lane said "Because I just like to get my family gifts and make them happy."

So why do people wait until those final hours? Donnie Handler of Biloxi says it's been one hectic month.

"Having a small child, Christmas shows and things like that, so it's been a crazy week. Kind of been out of town for the past few days, so it's come down to the wire," Donnie Handler said. "And hopefully, we'll get it done before everybody closes today."

And then there are people like Cristina Hughes of Saucier.

"I actually started before Thanksgiving.  But with five kids, you can't get everything all at one time," Cristina Hughes said. "Definitely, within the next hour, I'll be done. And everybody else can be out here with the crowds."

"It was hard to find a parking place out in the parking lot today," Handler said. When asked if he'll do this again next year, Handler laughed and said, "No!"

Then again, that's what most shoppers say every year.