By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great local journalism.
Merchants ready for Easter rush
Kathryn Garnett browses items at Heavenly Dove Christian book store in Cumming. Management said Easter is probably the store’s busiest season after Christmas. - photo by Autumn McBride

The Easter bunny isn’t the only one preparing for the big day Sunday.

Several local businesses will also see increased sales as a result of Easter.

Steve Reid, manager of Target on Market Place Boulevard, said the store has been stocked for several weeks with candy, cookies, baskets and other Easter goodies.

Some of the holiday specials include cookies from the bakery and many types of candy.

“We’ve got blank cookies that can be decorated by the kids, or if mom and dad are in a hurry, we’ve got cookies already decorated,” Reid said. “They’re only 99 cents each, so they’re a great value for moms.”

Reid said all the holiday candy is also on sale this week, and the store has “everything parents need to put together an Easter basket.”

“We’ve also got the pre-filled ones if they don’t have time to put it together themselves,” he said.

Another time-saver, Reid said, is “pre-stuffed [plastic] eggs,” already filled with sweet treats. 

Those looking to save time on their family dinner can find many shortcuts at the Honey Baked Ham store on Buford Road, said general manager Doug Griffith.

The store sells the traditional Easter entrée, but also offers turkey breasts and various side items and desserts.

“Our bone-in ham is the traditional ham of the holiday,” said Griffith, noting that Easter is probably the store’s busiest holiday after Christmas and Thanksgiving. "Honey Baked Ham is kind of like the extra member of the family.”

Reid said Target is also offering sales on holiday-focused food, such as hams and pineapples.

“The pineapples are since so many people put them on their hams,” he said.

Like Target, the Honey Baked Ham store also features some pre-made Easter baskets as well as “gourmet chocolate for the adults,” Griffith said.

Besides candy and food, many will focus on the religious significance of the day, which represents Christ’s resurrection.

Lori Gilstrap, manager of Heavenly Dove Christian Books on Hutchinson Road, said Easter is probably the store’s busiest season after Christmas.

“A lot of people buy gifts at Easter,” she said. “We’ve been doing a lot of Bibles with names imprinted on them.”

Among other gifts that are popular, she said, are books, CDs, and items such as stickers, videos and “resurrection eggs” for kids.

She explained the colorful, plastic eggs come in a carton and each features a different item relating to some aspect of Christ’s life.

“Like there’s the little gray donkey for his birth and a cross made of nails to symbolize his death,” Gilstrap said. “We have a lot of Sunday school teachers buy those to explain the story of Christ to kids.”

Brenda Dickey, owner of Funky Mountain Flowers on Bethelview Road, said Easter isn’t one of her busiest times of year, but she does do a fair amount of Easter lily deliveries.

“Those are pretty popular right now. Kids send them to moms and vice versa,” she said.

Dickey said she also had a fair amount of business from area churches for Palm Sunday last week.

“We get quite a few orders for the palm leaves,” she said. “But Easter isn’t a super busy time for us since it’s not a sweetheart holiday.”

Reid added that Target also has Easter lilies on sale this week.

Since the occasion falls so late in April this year, Reid said the store has also seen many customers buying summer clothing for their children’s Easter baskets.

“Since it’s already warm, they think it’s a good time to buy some shorts and T-shirts for the baskets,” he said.

He said many parents have also made return trips for candy.

“They’ve eaten the first round of candy and then had to come back two or three more times,” he said.