Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

November 24, 2012

Holiday shoppers seeking big sales

By GREG JORDAN
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

BLUEFIELD — Shoppers of Christmas past sought out the year’s must-have toy or the latest fashions, but this year they are seeking gifts that go with the word “sale.”

Plenty of shoppers carrying filled bags and minding their children roamed the Mercer Mall the day after Thanksgiving. Some bargain-hunters resting on the sidelines said they planned to spend the same or less than they had spent on previous holidays. Their primary goal was finding good prices.

“Nothing in particular,” Jenny Athy of Princeton replied when asked what was on her Christmas list this year. Her goal was to find gifts while saving money. “Just good deals, and I probably won’t spend as much as last Christmas.”

Small children roamed the mall under watchful eyes. One baby girl pounded on a shoe store’s window. She was eyeing some high heels.

“Come on. You can’t wear those,” her mother said.

Not far away, a group of women and two little girls were resting on benches next to a shopping cart full of boxes and bags.

“I’m not spending as much,” said Lisa Tagg, an Ohio resident visiting family.

Mary Porterfield of Princeton eyed the filled shopping cart. “You’d never guess it from all that.”

“Everything was on sale,” Lisa added.

Hanna Tagg, 6, said she wanted two toys and a necklace for Christmas. She lifted the flaps on her hat to show off a pair of earrings. She wants a necklace that will match.

Both Hanna and 4-year-old sister, Chloe, knew already that they were going to get one special gift for Christmas. Their big brother Chris Wray was coming home on leave from Afghanistan.

In another part of the mall, some other shoppers had assortments of clothing and accessories. Trish Muncy of War swore last year that she would not join the holiday shopping rush again. That resolution didn’t last long.

“We say not next year, not next year, but this is where we end up,” she said.

Bev Barnett, also of War, did not plan to spend more on gifts this year, but she suspected that she would spend a little more anyway; she has more people on her list this year.