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Christmas Eve brings out shoppers
Some love, others hate last-minute shopping
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
By PAUL COLLINS - Bulletin Staff Writer
Shopper Linda DeMarcey of Collinsville ran into a former co-worker whom she hadn’t seen in years as well as her son and his fiancée on Christmas Eve at Liberty Fair Mall.
DeMarcey said “I usually do” shop on Christmas Eve.
“I had to work the weekend,” she said.
On Monday she was buying last-minute and unexpected gifts.
“I love it,” DeMarcey said of Christmas Eve shopping.
One of the reasons is that she runs into other people shopping whom she hasn’t seen in years, like Joe Reynolds of Axton, whom until Monday she hadn’t seen in 20 years or so. They used to work together at Bassett-Walker Knitting.
Tina Gwin of Martinsville described herself and DeMarcey as “coupon queens.” Gwin is engaged to DeMarcey’s son, Tony Mullins.
“I’m never ready (for Christmas) until the 26th,” Gwin said with a smile.
“I love the last-minute rush, to see how fast I can get it done,” she said of shopping on Christmas Eve.
And was she finding good bargains?
“Absolutely! I just saved over $70,” Gwin said.
Gary Carr of Ridgeway said, “I’m kind of a last-minute Christmas shopper.” Why? “So I can take my time and think what I can get” for gifts, he said. He added that it’s fun to shop on Christmas Eve.
Not everyone agreed. One woman said she was buying unexpected gifts for people who had bought her gifts unexpectedly, and that she had so much else to do — buy food for a family meal, then go home, cook and wrap presents. “To be honest, it’s stressful,” she said.
Bob and Sue Cooper of Ridgeway, who have been married for 42 years, said they were mainly at the mall to get out and look around.
After all the hustle and bustle of getting their Christmas shopping done, they like to get out and see the Christmas decorations, Mrs. Cooper said.
She did do a little shopping at the mall Monday. She found some bargains on scrapbooking materials.
Telissa Hunt of Bassett said, “I think it’s fun and exciting to get out (on Christmas Eve) and see a lot of people you know. It’s not just shopping.”
She said she was finding a lot of bargains — 50 to 70 percent off in some stores, she said.
Another shopper, Asia Harrison, 16, said she finds Christmas Eve shopping “exciting and stressful at the same time” — stressful because she considers herself a “planner” usually.
Brothers Dannie, Bruce and Christopher Powell, all of Roanoke, have a tradition of coming to Liberty Fair Mall on Christmas Eve.
Christopher said that was because he has a brother who waits until the day before Christmas to shop for his wife. Christopher pointed at Dannie, smiling as he said that.
Dannie said he isn’t as bad, and that he buys Christmas gifts all along for his wife, but waits until Christmas Eve to buy the big stuff, such as clothes.
The brothers said they have fun getting together on Christmas Eve for the outing.
Shortly before noon Monday, there were hundreds of cars in the parking lot at Liberty Fair Mall.