Juban Crossing packed for Black Friday

DENHAM SPRINGS, LA (WAFB) - Some people headed out Thursday for the deals, others waited until Black Friday, but some purposely avoided shopping in Baton Rouge and went to Livingston Parish instead.

"We are hoping this is a good black Friday for Livingston Parish," said Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks.

The parking lot was full at Juban Crossing with many people walking around with full bags and shopping with carts full.

"We came in last night and we stayed until like 10 p.m. and then we got up again this morning. This is our second time here. I am a little ashamed," said Aubrey Efferson of French Settlement.

Efferson said instead of having to go to Baton Rouge or Hammond, she now only has to drive 15 minutes. The same goes for Toni Gilboy, who is actually from Baton Rouge, but went to Juban Crossing starting at 10 a.m. to shop.

"I try to avoid Black Friday because of all the crowds," said Gilboy. "We've been to Petsmart, Bed Bath and Beyond. This is the last stop."

There are also those who said they were getting dragged around by their wives.

"Shopping, buying gifts for the children and grandchildren and I am following my wife," said Joseph Palazola of Walker.

Technically, this was the first real Black Friday for many of the stores in Juban Crossing since the August 2016 flood.

Ricks said he hopes the crowds are a sign of how well the stores will do which in turn will help Livingston Parish's tax base.

"The percentage of taxes we get off of Juban Crossing in comparison to what's going on across the parish are tremendous. We are trending up from the flood simply because of building materials and vehicles and then it started tapering off," said Ricks.

Much like Livingston parish, the Denham Springs Mayor said their tax base is also just slightly above normal but they are hoping that sales from Black Friday will help carry them into next year.

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