Chris Wright, News On 6
TULSA, Oklahoma -- After enduring a tough couple of years, Tulsa businesses are banking on a better holiday shopping season in 2010.
Traffic is brutal at the intersection of 71st and Highway 169 just a week before Christmas. It's an area many of us try to avoid this time of year, for just that reason.
But not everyone is heading to the big box stores. Smaller, local businesses say they also attract more customers than they have since the Recession started.
The kernels have been popping non-stop at The Corn Poppers. The holidays mean big business for popcorn makers.
To help meet demand, the store has hired ten seasonal employees.
"We do a large part of our business like the last two weeks of December. It's really crazy, everyone comes in at once, for last-minute gifts and fresh popcorn," said Corn Popper owner Brad Berry.
Berry says business seems to be up this year when compared to the last two Christmas seasons. But he may have found a recession-proof business for this time of year.
"Every day, all day. Just no time to do anything else but shovel popcorn," Berry said.
Backwoods Equipment specializes in providing the perfect gift this holiday season for the outdoorsman in your life.
They say more Tulsans are shopping for hiking boots and fleeces this year.
"We've had a really busy season. Not a dull moment at all. People just coming in constantly to get their Christmas gifts, and warm weather clothing," said Tim Collver of Backwoods Equipment.
As the consumer continues to come back in 2010, employees expect to stay busy as the number of shopping days left continues to dwindle.
"I have a feeling that it's just going to get crazier and crazier up until Christmas," Collver said. "Then still crazy with all the returns and getting everybody set with what they need."
The city continues to push locals to shop in Tulsa. It launched its Shop Tulsa program earlier this year. It's an initiative designed to encourage Tulsans to do their holiday shopping in the city.