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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - It's tale of two Louisville shopping districts: one seeing a last minute frenzy, the other lackluster sales. The discouraging words are for South Fourth Street where newly opened businesses are hoping it will return to the retail hub it once was.
Christmas Eve and business is booming at the Why Louisville Boutique on Bardstown Road.
"It's been really nonstop lines," said store manager, Laura Read.
"It's a lot easier to get in and out of than the mall and I'm trying to get something different," said shopper, Duncan Ewing.
Shoppers say they are conscious of supporting local small businesses.
"It gives a lot of enthusiasm to the city it's great, it's fantastic," said shopper, Bridget Carpenter.
But the Christmas Eve shopping scene couldn't be more different just a few blocks away.
Once the bustling retail core of town, South Fourth Street is bracing for a comeback....it just hasn't happened yet.
"It's been a little slow but it's a work in progress," said Jim Williams.
Williams owns the upscale men's accessory store "The Leading Main" - located in SOFO.
He says most of his customers are out-of-towners who are here for weekend weddings.
He's hopeful business will start to pick up once two new hotels are built nearby.
"If you can remember how this end of Fourth Street used to look it's trying to bring something back," said Williams.
Nostalgia of sorts... that business owners are betting will translate into customers by the time the next Christmas shopping season arrives.
"I can see this being the hub of downtown," said Williams.
A total of nine locally owned retail shops make up the SOFO district between Broadway north to Muhammad Ali.