LIMA — Kathy Wilson stood guard Saturday just inside Bath & Body Works at the Lima Mall. She was making sure everyone was wearing a mask and limiting the number of people in the store.
Personally, she’s changed how she has shopped for the holiday season this year due to the pandemic.
“I’ve had to do a lot of it online. When I do go online it’s for free shipping if they offer that but I like to patronize the stores to keep employees with a job,” Wilson said.
Nanette Grant would rather shop in-store.
“I have bought online but only because when Victoria’s Secret went out, I couldn’t go to another mall to purchase, so I had to buy it online,” Grant said.
Deb Curie set up a Tupperware kiosk inside the mall and is noticing a decline in sales.
“I’m down from last year. We see lots of shoppers but not as many sales,” Curie said.
Curie says she prefers to shop in person.
“Definitely brick and mortar. I’m more of a hands-on kind of shopper. I want to see it. I want to take it home with me at that time,” Curie said.
Betsy Billingsley, marketing director at the Lima Mall, anticipates a big push as people finish up their shopping.
“We are starting to see business pick up a little bit. This is ‘Super Saturday.’ So the Saturday before Christmas is always really busy. We’ve seen some good steady traffic,” Billingsley said.
This year is not like any other.
“People are buying online and then you can call the store when you get there. They’ll run it out to you, so there’s some different options this year — and it’s kind of exciting to see a new kind of Christmas,” Billingsley said. “Despite the pandemic, things are going pretty well. We’re seeing a lot of people who like to shop. There’s shoppers like myself, they like to come out and get the right size at the right time and look for stuff. We’re seeing a lot of that and a lot of people just need to get out and they need to go somewhere because we’re all trapped in our houses.”
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.