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Stockton Shopping Center With Small Businesses Drawing Big Crowds

STOCKTON (CBS13) - A Stockton shopping center is drawing big crowds and it's primarily made up of small businesses.

Families are getting on board with shopping in Stockton, and they're waiting in line to do it.

"We had a great year last year, actually. This year has just been better," said Julie Van Noate, owner of the store Best Wishes.

The majority of stores in Lincoln Center are small businesses.

"I think it has just felt better for a lot of small business, in terms of people taking that risk in doing something they always wanted to try," said Starr Donati, owner of Flair Boutique.

And they're doing very well financially.

"Coincidentally, we just expanded," she said.

The center's holiday attractions are all free and they're attracting shoppers from outside the city.

"We heard about it on Facebook and it just seemed really cool and I saw all the nice pictures," said Lodi shopper Amanda Lee.

"I'm actually from Lincoln. I met up with my friend here," said shopper Kristie Thornton.

"The shops are really decorated out and everyone is in a great mood over here," said Kimiko, from Tracy.

The shopping center is now filled and got a big boost with the opening of McCaulou's department store in November.

"Very new…brand new. That space had been vacant a long time. Our landlords took a long time to figure out what they wanted there that would be the best draw for us," said Van Noate.

"There are so many shoppers that Lincoln Center decided to have free valet parking.

Shop owners say not only does it feel like Christmas, but it feels like the good economy in Stockton is back.

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