Shoppers crowded into Carole Brookshire’s clothing store, RevelationTops.com, on Saturday, a big shift from recent business trends, she said.
“I haven’t seen a day like that in months,” said Brookshire, who serves as treasurer for the Montrose Shopping Park Assn., which organizes the annual event.
The festival has drawn loyal crowds to the area for years and is traditionally a big business weekend for store owners, she said.
But by attracting customers this year, businesses hoped to gain new customers that would continue visiting the area and potentially help struggling stores, said Greg Tomassian, owner of Al’s Italian Deli.
“It does bring in new people that have not been in the area,” Tomassian said, adding that he served one new customer over the weekend who had lived in Montrose for 12 years, but had never noticed the deli because he never walked down Honolulu Avenue.
“It brings in people who would otherwise not come,” he said.
Most of the weekend business, however, was concentrated at the booths that lined Honolulu.
Visitors who had planned on visiting for a stroll or simply to make one small purchase ended up going on shopping sprees and finding inexpensive items they hadn’t previously thought about.
A display of jewelry and wind chimes made from shining silverware caught Montrose resident Lisa Zollner’s eye.
She examined a set of bracelets made from spoons more than 80 years old as craftsman Ronald de Zwart explained that one of them was fashioned from a replica of a spoon used by Queen Elizabeth.
“I come here every year mainly to get toe rings, but then I get sucked into all the other things,” Zollner said.