During “the most wonderful time of the year” the last thing most people want to do is trudge through crowded stores, battling with grandmas in babushkas. However, walking through the Millcreek Mall around Christmas can actually make the holidays a little brighter. How?

1. Santa is maybe the best thing about any major shopping complex during the holidays. Whether you enjoy sitting on his lap yourself, or watching adorable toddlers carefully explaining their wish list to him, Santa is an undeniable smile-maker. His jolly laugh and funny-looking elves give people of all ages a reason to enjoy shopping.

2. There are a ton of sales. Everyone enjoys a good bargain. College students are certainly not made of money, and with a ramen-noodle budget, we need all the breaks we can get. With the plentiful stores in the mall, chances are you can find a gift for anyone at a bargain.

3. Convenience is another reason to enjoy the mall at Christmas. Rather than making several trips to several stores spread out over Peach Street, why not indulge in one-stop shopping. With stores for him, stores for her, stores for kids and stores for pets, you really can find something for everyone in a reasonable amount of time. And of course, that gives you time to window shop and flesh out your own wish list.

4. If you’re anything like me, wrapping presents is the worst part of the holidays. Somehow perfectly square presents end up looking like Santa’s bag of goodies. But, the Millcreek Mall offers present wrapping on the spot. For a small fee you can get your presents wrapped and festooned in ribbon before you had back home. It’s a great way to make sure presents look like presents, and keep your family from peeking.

5. A genuinely unselfish, fantastic reason to shop at the Millcreek Mall is the opportunities to give back to the community. The Salvation Army bell ringers stand at nearly every entrance and throughout the mall. Individual stores also offer possibilities to help a charity or person in need. It’s easy while you’re in the mall to drop your change from a purchase into one of these worthy causes because during the holidays, every little bit helps.