VIENNA- People flocked to area stores Thursday to return Christmas gifts that were just not right for them while others took advantage of after-Christmas sales and the chance to use gift cards they might have received on Christmas.
At the Grand Central Mall, people were out taking advantage of sales while others wanted to get out of the houses after the holiday and do something different.
Ron and Cat Brilliant of Williamstown were at the mall Thursday so Cat could look for deals.
Photo by Michael Erb
Shoppers Elizabeth Cheuvront, left, Becky Cheuvront, center, and Kim Gant, right, browse through sale-priced calendars Thursday at a kiosk in the Grand Central Mall. The day after Christmas marks one of the busiest retailer days for returned items and post-holiday sales.
"My wife wanted to come out for the sales," Ron said. "She is in there (Elder-Beerman) and we are out here (outside the store in a waiting area)."
Ron already had a handful of bags.
"We are carrying," he said with a laugh. "We are just out and about.
"We are going to have lunch with our daughter. We are just looking for any bargains."
Cat has traditionally worked the day after Christmas, but had Thursday off.
"This year, I had the day off so I said 'I was going to the mall to see what I could get,"' she said. "We are just out for the sales."
One of Cat's purchases included a $60 quilt she was able to get for $20.
"That is a good deal," she said.
"She is excited about it," Ron said of the sales.
Many stores were starting their after-the-holidays sales as well as a number of special deals.
Some stores and kiosks had signs out announcing sales. Many holiday-themed items and time-sensitive merchandise were marked down as much as 50 percent.
Many stores had their own sales going on. Some stores had signs announcing selected merchandise was marked down 50 to 65 percent.
Joni Eddy of Washington, W.Va., said she had a return to make Thursday but was out with her daughter looking for special deals.
"We are out doing the sales," she said. "I have an exchange and the rest was my daughter who had some money burning a hole in her pocket. She has found all kind of goodies."
Eddy pointed out that although her daughter had around four bags, there was more than meets the eye.
"There were bags inside of bags," Eddy said. "She has done quite well."
The mall was operating with four additional shopping hours Thursday, being open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. The mall returns to normal business hours today and will be open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
On New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, the mall will be open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Regular business hours will resume Thursday, Jan 2.
Margaret Jeffries of Sistersville was out looking for special deals Thursday.
"We are taking advantage of sales and using our gift cards," she said. "We have found quite a lot today.
"They are really having some good sales and we are still looking."
Jeffries said she usually comes to the after-Christmas sales as a change of pace for herself and her family.
"It allows us to get out of the house and see what is going on in the world," she said. "We get to watch the people and see the kids who are excited."
Jeffries noted that if people could wait until after the actual holiday to do their holiday shopping they could find some great deals.
"You could do all your shopping now and save a lot of money," she said with a laugh.