Tri-City shoppers clog stores after Christmas

Tri-City retail stores were filled with after-Christmas shoppers. They were spending holiday cash, returning gifts that didn't work out and taking advantage of hot bargains.

Shoppers clogged streets and stores at Columbia Center mall in Kennewick, as well the Uptown Shopping Center in Richland and the Road 68 retail area in Pasco.

Theresa Musser, owner of Gadgets & Goodies in Kennewick, said she saw about a 20 percent increase in her holiday shoppers.

"I was amazed by the increase," she said. "But I'm sure it had something to do with the fact I'm retiring next month and have my sale going on."

Musser has been in the retail business since 1989, first operating a small gift shop at the Columbia Center Auto Wash. She's been at her current location at 5724 W. Clearwater Ave. for the past six years.

Big Lots in Kennewick saw a steady stream of shoppers Thursday morning, but by afternoon the buzz lifted a little, a store employee said.

Columbia Center mall saw its usual crowds of shoppers throughout the holiday season and after Christmas was no different, said Jordan Youngs, marketing and business development director for the mall.

"We've been busy this whole season with lots of last-minute shoppers," he said. "After-Christmas shopping was close to being as busy as black Friday but that is still the busiest day of the year for us."

-- Dori O'Neal: 582-1514; doneal@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @dorioneal