In an informal survey with some of Cherokee's retail merchants, most were very satisfied with their Christmas season sales.
Electronic products were hot items this year, from video gaming systems to televisions - especially high definition televisions.
K-Mart manager Rhonda Sease said that sales were "better than expected," and listed game systems and a new line of Craftsman tools as especially "hot" items at her store.
Wilson TV and Appliance owner Randy Pritts said sales went very well in a "very competitive" holiday sales season. Sales of electronics were very good - especially the high definition televisions- and appliance sales, said Pritts, were "through the roof."
Fashionette manager Kurt Clabaugh said his store had a very good season, "about normal" for a Christmas season. Coats and sweaters sold well, as did High Definition televisions, and a new line of spring fashions.
Darren Zwiefel, owner of Darren's Clothing Company, said his store had a "nice, strong Holiday season," and is appreciative of the "supportive community " of Cherokee. Zwiefel said sales were good "across the board" in both men's and women's clothing, and singled out men's casual sport coats as a popular item.
Hy Vee Drugstore manager Jeff Osborn said that the season was "great." Osborn said he felt many customers were "in the holiday mood," and sales of seasonal items in the gift department were "fantastic."
Carol Carey, owner of Carey's Furniture, said her store also had a "very good season - we moved a lot of stuff." Sales were consistent throughout the holiday season, Carey said, and among the "stuff" that moved were recliners, table and chair sets, and beds.
Although Dale Bartel, owner of Valley Gifts, said that , unlike past holiday seasons, there really wasn't any one special item that sold well, overall sales were satisfactory.
Tom Letsche of Letsche's Bike Shop/Radio Shack said sales were very good. Letsche said there was a "lot of traffic" in the store, and sales of electronics, especially cell phones and digital music players, went very well. They even sold a few bicycles, which are usually spring and summer purchases.
Cherokee General Store owner Sarah Cook felt that her store had a "very nice season," and said that personal products, such as hand creams and lotions, as well as gourmet food items, sold especially well.
Creative Services owner Mick Samsel said sales of NFL and college garments and gifts were good - especially Iowa State University items, which Samsel said "probably outsold University of Iowa items."New business owner Judy Klee of The Spice Rack was very pleased with her first Christmas season. Baked goods like pizzelles and biscotti were big sellers, as was the French press coffee pot, and David Klee's CD of Christmas favorites.
Klee also said that customers have requested meat grinders and other items, and she has ordered these items.