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Holiday Shopping Event hoping to bring new customers to Salisbury

SALISBURY — Jeff Penfil, owner of Stately Homes at 126 N. Main St., said he’s been waiting 26 years for Salisbury to become a destination for shoppers and day-trippers in the Piedmont area.

“I wish there was, like, 20 or 30 shops like mine that were this quality, that were fixed up like this, that were selling this kind of merchandise,” Penfil said of his antiques store. “People would be coming here like crazy to spend money. And we’d be giving Charleston and Hendersonville and other places like that a run for their money.”

In order to make that dream a reality, Penfil has teamed up with the owners of 11 other downtown shops to host the Salisbury Holiday Shopping Event, scheduled next week starting Tuesday.

“We wanted to be an eye-opener to people out of the area to come here to see that there are enough shops and enough things going on that they can all shop and enjoy themselves and get a good meal and want to come back,” Penfil said.

The 12 shops that are participating are Stately Homes; Great Finds and Designs, 429 N. Main St.; Kitchen Store, 106 N. Main St.; Fine Frame Gallery, 105 S. Main St.; Salisbury Square Antiques and Collectibles, 111 S. Main St.; Candy Shoppe on Main, 119 S. Main St.; Griffin’s Guitars, 121 S. Main St.; Critters, 125 S. Main St.; Growing Pains Family Consignment Shop, 122 S. Main St.; South Main Book Co., 110 S. Main St.; The Brown Eyed Suzy, 113 W. Innes St.; and Windsor Gallery Fine Jewelers, 1810 W. Innes St.

The shops will be open during normal business hours Tuesday through Nov. 18 and 1-4 p.m. Nov. 19.

Penfil said some stores will offer discounts to customers who say that they’ve come for the holiday promotion, though he said the discount amount will be up to each individual shop owner.

He said shoppers will be allowed to go to participating stores in any order. Maps will be available at all the participating stores.

Penfil said no restaurants are involved because “it would be a shame to focus on one.”

“When people come, they might want to have Mexican food, they might want to have an American breakfast, they might want to go to another place and have a more continental lunch. You don’t know, so why not let them make their own decisions about it?” Penfil said.

He said shop owners will make recommendations to customers who ask where they should eat.

Penfil said if the Holiday Shopping promotion is successful, the participating business owners have discussed doing a similar event in the spring.

“They want to bring in new people and have people become familiar with them who haven’t been before,” Penfil said. “And I think this is a way to go about doing that, we hope, to get new people in.”

For more information, contact Penfil at 704-633-6220.

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.

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