SARASOTA (WWSB) -Halloween’s over and it seems the holidays are already here.
The retail holiday season seems to have started a bit early this year with lights already up in several shopping centers, malls and on light post in many areas across the Suncoast.
The big question is whether now is too early for stores to put up holiday decorations or for shoppers to buy holiday gifts.
Friday evening, The Mall at UTC expects to turn on it’s holiday lights and host a list of events to kick off the season.
Although it seems retail stores may be jumping the gun when it comes to prepping for the holidays, the mall’s Marketing Director and General Manager tell us each year around the same time staff put up decorations so the thought of the holidays kicking off earlier than usual isn’t true.
“We actually start in the middle of August putting the lights up. It takes significant time and effort to really get all the holiday up throughout the entire UTC district. It’s over 1.5 million lights and 70 thousand light strands. So as you can imagine there is a lot of time and effort that goes into it”, says Marketing Director Lauren Clark.
“It’s really to give back to the community. A part of it is to enhance the holiday experience and that’s one of the reasons we put all this effort and all this time and money into really giving this gift back to the community, buy yeah it really does drive traffic to the center and we all know that means more business”, says General Manager Jeramy Burkinshaw.
The Mall at UTC plans to kick off the holiday season Friday night November 9th from 6 pm to 7 pm.
All the decorations will finally be turned on, there will be ice skating, snow tubing, food & drinks, a special appearance from Santa and a grand fireworks show.