Crowds slim as shoppers search for post-holiday bargains

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 26, 2001

Neal Nations looks through a rack of men’s jackets at Goody’s in Pemberton Square mall this morning. Nations said he arrived just after 7 a.m. to buy for himself now that Christmas is over.(The Vicksburg Post/MELANIE DUNCAN

[12/26/01]Crowds were slim at Pemberton Square Mall this morning as shoppers returned to stores in search of bargains and exchanges.

Two of the mall’s department stores Goody’s Family Clothing and McRae’s opened at 8 a.m. to accomodate an expected post-Christmas rush, but store aisles remained unclogged for the first hour of business.

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“It’s been slow, really slow,” said Gail Cummings, a manager at Goody’s, where three shoppers were strolling the aisles 20 minutes after doors opened. “I guess people are either sleeping in really late today, or else there was some really great gift-picking that went on before Christmas.”

The shoppers who were present at Goody’s and McRae’s confirmed Cummings’ hunch, clutching discount coupons rather than unwanted gifts.

“I’ve got to find a size medium shirt,” said Vicksburg resident Neal Nations, who was shopping at Goody’s. “Every man my age goes through a size medium at one point in life.”

Victoria Galloway of Jackson, one of the about 20 shoppers in McRae’s early today, left with a purse and wallet purchased at a discount.

“I had been visiting family here for about a week, so I decided to see if I could get some things for good prices,” Galloway said.

Coupons in hand, Elsie Landers of Vicksburg was at McRae’s when the store opened at 8. Landers said the deal-hunting would probably keep her out until noon.

“I’m going to spend all my coupons,” Landers said. “That’s what made me get out of the house this morning.” Ilene Mullins was looking for toaster ovens in the McRae’s housewares section.

“The bargains” was her reply when asked why she rose early to shop.

Cummings, who is spending her first Christmas as a Goody’s manager, said she didn’t mind the slow start to the day.

“It’s nice to not be busy after being so rushed last week,” she said. “This is like Christmas for me.”