Last-minute holiday shoppers look for something special

BY Leah Mishkin, Correspondent |

The Kaminsky family had eight gifts left to buy on Christmas Eve, but they found most of them in their local bookstore. Ellen Zimiles, the co-owner of Words Bookstore in Maplewood, says lines have been full throughout the day.

“We’re open until 6 and people come in at 5:45 and say I need one last thing, I need one last thing,” said Zimiles.

According to the National Retail Federation, 7 percent of shoppers wait until Christmas Eve to buy their presents.

A local toy store in Maplewood says the month of December is by far number one in terms of sales, and that goes all the way until the last minute.

“We had some people come, they leave for a second, buy more, leave another minute, and come back and buy some more,” said Toy Division owner Silas Starr.

Five-year-old Liam and his dad Jeremy Weiss were at the card shop Truly Yours in Maplewood.

“Came in to buy my mom some cards, or a card. It’s the one thing that I always forget, and it’s the one thing she always reminds me that I forgot,” Weiss said. “She can get a trip to anywhere in the world but she’ll say you didn’t get me a card.”

But it’s not just about shopping, as a customer pointed out. It’s about where you shop. Truly Yours has been in business for 40 years. Store owner Jean Zucker says a lot of people appreciate the sentiment more than the gift.

“My good friend here, she’s a diamond for this town,” said Maplewood resident Scafford Simmonds.

It’s no surprise that Truly Yours had very few cards left around noon.