Lights Festival shines on Magnificent Mile
November 21, 2009 (CHICAGO) (WLS) -- In a sure sign of the holiday season, hundreds of thousands of people filled downtown Chicago Saturday night for the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival.
For retailers, it is critical that all the upbeat people start shopping and help the down-and-out economy.
Ready or not, here come the holidays.
"Being a Christmas baby, this is my favorite time of year," one spectator told ABC7 Chicago.
Mickey Mouse did the honors, lighting up the Magnificent Mile, not to mention the faces of the thousands who watched. ,p> "Mickey mouse, the lights, dancing," said woman holding a little boy who indicated the music was the best part of the show.
"I've been here every year, and it just keeps getting better and better," another person said.
The singing, the spectacle, and of course, Santa Claus, all combined to kick-off Chicago's holiday shopping season.
"Basicall,y because we've made it a full day of activities, so many people come down. The weather really helps. When they're done here, they can't help but start the holiday shopping" said the festival's Jennifer Woolford.
The National Retail Federation is predicting a drop in holiday spending this season. Last year, they reported the average person spent $705. This year, they predict it'll be $682 a person.
"The list is trimmed down, of course, with the economy, but we'll still shop for everyone," holiday shopper Jodi Steal said.
"I'm unemployed right now. So, it'll be a little on the homemade side, but it'll be fun," Nancy Rascon said.
Algonquin resident Aimee Mazzoni received her Christmas present early this year: a marriage proposal after six years of dating her boyfriend, Bill Cosban.
"I know! A long time, right? I told her the ring would be worth it. Hopefully, it is," Cosban said.
"Yep, it's worth it," said Mazzoni.
city of chicago, holiday, local, ben bradley
- 2 hurt in Edgewater crash 51 min ago
- Malaysia jet may have turned back 12 min ago
- Near-death experience inspires businessman
- ABC7 First Alert Weather Forecast
- Cardinal George: 'I expect to get through this'
- 6 shot at party in Austin
- PM won't budge '1 centimeter' from Ukrainian land
- Interpol: Database not checked pre-Malaysia flight 53 min ago
- No consensus on notifying victims of data breaches
- Illinois halts plan to require ATV permits 6 min ago
- Attempted abduction prompts community alert
- Video: Newsviews - Tom Cross
- Video: Newsviews - Bob Grogan
- abcnews: Teens Help Save Man Stuck in Sewer
- 2 hurt in Edgewater crash
51 min ago
Most Viewed StoriesMost Viewed Photos