'Twas the day before Christmas when all through the mall, shoppers were hustling from near and far.
"I have four kids, and we live in Gunnison, so we drove two and a half hours just to buy some presents for them and make them happy," said shopper Jose Alarcon.
About 17 million people were expected to hit the stores for last minute shopping today, according to ConsumerReports.com. The crowds were plentiful at Mesa Mall, some just starting their shopping while others wrap up the final gifts on their lists.
"I usually get it done before today, and now it's just crowded, but I love the crowds... it doesn't bother me," said Ashley Jones, who said she was too tired to shop over the weekend for her two kids.
The crowds were a good sign for retailers.
"It's been really good energy everywhere, and I think everyone is in a good mood," said Olivia Conrardi, assistant manager at Turbo in Mesa Mall. "Even though it snowed, everybody's making it down here to shop a little bit last minute so it's fun."
For Alarcon, his last minute shopping contributes to the Christmas spirit of giving.
"[My wife and I] aren't getting much, but my kids-- we want them to be happy and to remember this holiday," Alarcon said. "The reason why we celebrate Christmas is not to receive presents but to give, so that's what we're doing. We're trying to give them more happiness."
Mesa Mall will be closed Tuesday for Christmas and re-open at 8 a.m. on Wednesday morning.
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