By David A. Farrell, Item Staff Writer
The Picayune Item
Downtown merchants are looking forward to the Picayune Main Street promotion of “Shop by Candlelight” on Friday, Dec. 7, and Jackie Bellanger, proprietor of Pottery & More, says her shop always does better during a promotion.
She, like a lot of small business owners who operate shops in the downtown business district, are looking to Christmas to put them in the black for the year.
That’s one reason Black Friday was so important to merchants since it kicked off the Christmas shopping season.
Bellanger says she likes her new location, 101 North Main Street in the downtown section, corner of North Main and West Canal streets, where Galiano’s used to be, across from Stonewall’s.
“It’s quaint down here, and we have good traffic, and it picked up during Black Friday, and has remained steady, and now we are looking forward to ‘Shop by Candlelight,’ which is on Dec. 7,” said Bellanger. “We expect good traffic during that promotion, too. We always do better during special promotions.”
Picayune Main Street officials are expecting a big night during the Shop by Candlelight promotion, which will kick off at 5 p.m. and stretch to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7.
Officials said the promotion was one of their best last year, and they are expecting it to be even better this year.
Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus will be on hand at the Picayune Amtrak depot, and two special Christmas trees have been installed, one at West Canal and Main Street, and the other in front of the depot, to enhance the Christmas spirit. The depot has been designated the South Pole.
It was reported that Santa and Mrs. Claus took the “Polar Express” from the North Pole to Windsor, Ontario, Canada, took a taxi across the Ambassador Bridge into Detroit and will hop on an Amtrak to Picayune for the festivities. His reindeer are resting for the big night of Dec. 24, officials said.
Bellanger describes her store as a “gift shop,” but she has much more than just gifts. She said she has home and garden decor, local art and artistic creations, custom framing and hand-poured soy candles.
Like all other gift shops in the downtown section, the smaller shops have to carve out a niche to compete. “We have selected our merchandise with the idea that price does matter. So our items are reasonably priced so someone can get that special person in their lives a nice gift, without mortgaging the house. We worked hard this year to obtain good, affordable gifts,” she said.
She said a lot of shoppers put off their shopping to the last minute, but advised prospective shoppers to shop early for the best bargains and in order to have more selection.