Crafters and business owners alike look forward to Christmas in Paris each year, an event that brings the community together to shop local. Then late last week they got the word: it was canceled. But if there’s any word that can describe 2020 it’s “resilience,” and the businesses found a way to move forward.
The Paris Apothecary parking lot off of Lamar Avenue was packed with tents and vans Saturday morning, with vendors selling everything from baked goods to clothing — there were even pets up for adoption. Eager shoppers milled around looking to snag some early Christmas gifts and fashionable finds. The businesses had successfully bounced right back.
While some vendors brought tents, Maci Fowler, owner of Sister Babyz Boutique, went all out with a portable store in a van. Fowler said with the holiday season only days away, she’s starting to see more customers coming by to stock up on presents.
“School let out yesterday, teachers are out, so everyone’s kind of starting to get the holidays on their mind with Thanksgiving next week,” Fowler said. “And I know we have a lot of customers who have already been Christmas shopping.”
The mini version of the boutique, which offers clothes, plus size options, jewelry, accessories and more, was packed with customers, some scooping up shiny necklaces and others purchasing cozy winter pieces. Wrapping up a necklace for a customer, Fowler said she was thankful some version of the event was able to happen this year, thanks to organizing done by Gifts From Above Boutique and Paris Apothecary. She said it’s important for local businesses to stick together.
“Obviously, it’s not the same. I wish that everyone could be all in one place, but we’re making it work, and everyone’s sticking together to make it work,” Fowler said. “We’re making the best of it.”