FRIDAY, DEC. 19, 1981 BLYTHEVILLE (ARK.) V COURIER NEWS Christmas Survey Shows Shopper Spending More •OB." Television i«ti .r» movkij well i Seattle and San Francisco. Two [ the biggest departmept stores i St. Louis not« a "IrwnendoUB «mand" for toys. - * By WALTER BKKKDE JK NEW YORK (ft — Christmas bus- Iness Is £o good, says a Charlotte, N. C., merchant, that he even has a brisk demand for $50 neckties. They are made of velvet, woven with pure gold. Denver's three biggest department stores agree that yule business is "substantially heavier" than last" year and will set new records. In Chicago, President Joel Gold- blatl of Coldblalt Brothers Inc., reports: "We're running 10 per cen» •head right now. It It keeps up it will be the biggest Christmas business In our history." These enthusiastic comments are typical of others obtained In un Associated Press survey of Christmas shopping trends In 24 cities, From coast to coast It's pretty much the same story: stores bulging with shoppers, downtown park- Ing lots Jammed, holiday buyers spending more money. The one big exception is New York, John Raasch, president of Wanamaker's New York store, reports sales running behind last year "and I doubt if we'll pick up what we've lost." He blames transportation difficulties, compe tition of convenient suburban shopping centers and—most of al —the city sales tax of three cents on the dollar. All. Wanamaker sEores outside New York expect to better las year's volume. Two universal complaints In the country at large are lack of park Ing facilities for shoppers and ; shortage of trained sales help Merchants blame a late Thanks giving for the traffic crush. Thej say people are trying to cram al of their buying into a shorter time In Kansas City the downtow chopping district Is so Jamme with cars that operators of out lying parking lots are supplyin e "shuttle-bus" service for their pal rons. Philadelphia has banned al parking of passenger cars in th central city area. Gripes about the help situation are long and loud. A Los Angele retailer complains: "It's murder/ Macy's New York licked the heli problem by Interviewing 27,000 ar plicants for part-time Christma work. Six thousand'were hired, ir eluded were nine Santa Clauses- two more than last year. The big siorp is experimenting with a self- service toy department. Most retailers agree that the shortage of help stems from current full employment and general prosperity—the same influences that are bringing record crowds of shoppers into the stores. A merchant in Richmond, Va., theorizes that part-time help Is hard to get because people have more money in Christmas clubs and don't need the extra work. Changed buying habits here and there arc attributed to the imminent change in the national administration. Washington department stores say they are having a tough time selling furniture and rugs. They think it's because government jobholders are uncertain about their future. ;• The Republican victory Is credited elsewhere with' loosening the purse strings of higher-Income shoppers. Indisputably there h»s been a big gain in Christmas sales in the plushier type of store commonly associated with such famous-name streets as Fifth Avenue in New York or Michigan Boute- vnrcl in Chicago. Typical of the growing prominence of suburban shopping centers is (his comment from John C. Bailey, managing director of the ' Chamber of Commerce In White Plains, N. Y., on New York City's outskirts. 'All lines are doing exceptlon- lly well. Christmas business lauld be at least 10 per cent bet- er than last year." Highest In Nation With a,population of 45,000 and nnunl retail volume of 125 mil- ion dollars, White Plains has the ilghesl per capita retail sales In he nation. Reports from other cities: R. C. Dolbin, manager of the Dallas, Tex., retail Merchants As- ociation, figures this year's Christmas sales will hit a new high of more lhan eight million dollars with men's furnishings, leather foods, hosiery and toys among the eaders. Boston merchants expect a record Christmas volume If the weath Is good for tha rest- of the shopping season. They report miss es and,women's wear selling bes and home appliances doing wel but toy soles down from las year. Lower prices are luring shopper Into Indianapolis stores, with de nand holding up for all classes of merchandise except TV. A rec ord volume appears likely. Southern retailers say increase! employment, in textile mills am easier Installment credit will boos holiday sales to all-time peaks Charlotte, N. C., Is one of the fev cities reporting a boom In house hold appliances and TV sets. Ap parcl for "formal" wear ha shown a marked 'rise. Charlotf' merchants also ate doing bris] business in soft goods and jewelry Atlanta reports a slight tren away from TV sets and towav< soft goods and luxury items. Richmond, Va., Alfred Thompson, manager of Miller & Rhonds, predicts: "We're going to set a new record for volume—dollar, and merchandise—this Christmas sea- Bing Is Rehired By Metropolitan NEW YORK who modernized — Rudolf Blng, >n d streamlined Metropolitan Opera productions, has been hired for nnother. three•ear term as general manager. George A. Sloan, chairman o( the Metropolitan Opera " Association's 3oard of Directors, announced Blng's contract renewal last night and expressed satisfaction with' his artistic successes nt the Met. Guam Governor Says He'll Quit AONA, Guam (fll — Carleton E. Skinner, disclosed lu will resign by Jan. 20, the day the new Republican administration takes over In Washington. The Guam governor said yesterday he Informed Secretary of the Interior-designate Douglas McKay of his Intention to quit when they met at Honolulu last week. He said he had asked that announcement of his decision be withheld until he could report to the Guam Legislature. Skinner quoted McKay as saying he had no one In mind for the post. PACK THREE Benson Confers With Farm Men KANSAS CITY W-Ezra Benson, who will become secretary of «Brl- Robert w. Service, English-born Canadian poet, is known as "the Kipling of the Arctic." cultur* when President-elect Elsen- hower take* office, conferred yesterday with larm and Industry leaders from Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Arkansas. His stop here was one In a series of regional conferences he is holding to bcconu acquainted with farm, soil conservation and related problems. He conferred with a cross-section of tho agricultural Industry, farmers, agricultural college officials, farm organization leaders, livestock and grain men. OPEN NIGHTS Until Christmas KIRBY DRUG STORES • ADIAMT CAS HEATERS Have I i arcraviganct. Two sun 20,000 and 2*,OOO B.T.U. A_G_A_ Jpprcrved lot alt ga*e*. COME in MX) K a yo*n New low prices ^,18.20 up EARL WALKER Plumber Phones 3553—8433 At Kelley's HERE'S THE PERFECT GIFT ** FOR THAT "NEW ARRIVAL' ;»v Just the thing to bring little papooses home' "injun style." Toasty SIOUX MOX, baby' moccasins in beautiful capeskins, hand beaded in authentic Indian designs. Cuddly and soft with fleece linings to keep ',:~'v\ precious feel warm and safe from ,w'">fk drafts. Come in and see them. MAIL ORDERS TOO I RICHLY FUKtIO HAND tIADID CAPESKINS KELLEY'S Your Friendly Shoe Store DREIFUS CHRISTMAS mm &*t*t**U • t DREIFUS EASIEST SELECTIONS DIAMOND Ensemble WATCHES DBliiSitt $297* Masculine T5c a Week Lovely gel Year to Pay 11 Diamonc $3.00 »4C*0* Set Week IJ¥ lnn Beauty iUV Year to Pay CHOICE! 2-DIAMOND BIRTHSTONE Lovely 50o Compact. Week *4°° Outstanding Vali* Sunbeam Mixmasler *46 5a $1.00 Week Candle Stick* 12 M«a W«*k v Ch . a !j 9e Meet Dreifus , .
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