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Downtown Businesses Survive In Cold Weather

February 27, 2014, 7:00 AM by Stephanie Gregory

Downtown Businesses Survive In Cold Weather
SIOUX FALLS, SD -

The sidewalks are desolate and the temperatures frigid. This year "Old Man Winter" has been stronger than in the past and downtown Sioux Falls businesses are feeling the pain.

"The extreme cold does slow things down. We feel it every time it dips below zero. We notice a sharp decline in the number of people out and about," Cookie Jar general manager Greg Koch said.

Stores like the Cookie Jar and Ten Thousand Villages rely on warmer weather and foot traffic to drive people into their store.

"Foot traffic is huge. It makes all the difference especially downtown where we're more of a shopper friendly walker environment," Koch said.

In the winter, sales tend to drop. But with the colder than normal weather this year, stores can really tell people are opting to stay home.

Even with the chilly temps, businesses are still turning on the "open" signs.

"Stores are open, restaurants are open and even though it's cold outside, we still want to make it welcoming inside," Ten Thousands Villages Sioux Falls manager Linda Watts said.

If you want to stay away from crowds and don't mind bundling up a bit, it may be the best time to shop.

"Actually, if you don't like a lot of crowds, this is a great time to come downtown," Watts said.

Good news though, spring is officially 21 days away.

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