Chico, Calif.--With Christmas, just four days away, last minute shoppers are heading to stores…but this year many have decided to shop locally.
Noe Rodriguez started his holiday shopping three days ago.
"Getting to the last minute so it's getting a little stressful, it's kind of last minute so trying to get it all done before the weekend," Rodriguez said.
Aimee Anderson is the manager at Made-In-Chico and told me it's been one of the busiest holiday season she's experienced.
"You know actually with this beautiful weather I think we're seeing more people downtown this year than we ever have so it's really pretty great,” she said.
For many, shopping locally is personal. Tomi Chaney has lived in Chico for 14 years and worked at a local business when she was younger and understands the importance of keeping dollars local.
"You know you get to see people that you went to school with in high school or their parents that own these stores, or like some of us that worked here in high school downtown and you get to give back to them and show your support," Chaney said.
Whether it's the music in the stores, interacting with other shoppers, or even holding and looking at what you want to buy, business owners said that shopping locally provides an experience that you can't get online.
Jessica Eddy and Rue Sullivan are co-owners of The Rustic Nest.
They opened four months, so they are experiencing their first holiday shopping season and said sales have been incredible the past few weeks.
Do they feel like they've been competing with the other local businesses? Not at all, in fact they said that they've been, "totally supportive, everyone's been amazing. People send people to us, we send people to them and none of the business have been anything but nice, they're all amazing," the co-owners said.
"I just think that that little spark in people's eyes when they're helping you shop, we can give you suggestions and I just think it comes from the heart a little more," Anderson said.
Many of the stores downtown have extended hours this weekend, and as an added perk for last minute shoppers, some are even offering gift-wrapping.
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