ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – Tens of thousands of St. Louisans spent the holiday weekend shopping at West County Center.

Adobe Analytics says that between Thanksgiving weekend and Cyber Monday, about 166 million Americans are likely to shop.

“My husband’s an eye doctor, so I’m here grabbing some gifts for his office staff,” Casey Lazarus said.

Lazarus also went shopping on Black Friday.

“I went out bright and early in the morning and found some deals,” she said.

Sean Phillips has worked for West County Center since they opened in 2002. He says while things have changed for brick-and-mortar stores, Black Friday and the weekend that follows is still the “Super Bowl of the retail industry.”

With the convenience of online shopping and the inconvenience of a global pandemic, Phillips said they are seeing more shoppers in person month-to-month in 2022 than they did in 2019.

“So that’s showed us not only people are back out, but they’re actually back out even more than they were before the pandemic,” he said.

West County Center will not have the final numbers in until December for how many customers they had this weekend, but according to an Adobe Analytics report, in-person shopping increased by 2.9%. Online sales rose 2.3%.

“I love to come to a store and actually shop,” Carol Hanschmidt said. “I like that.”

A lot of retailers inside the mall including Nordstrom, Macy’s and Sephora have already unlocked Cyber Monday specials. Experts say the biggest deals will be on electronics, clothing, shoes, and cosmetics.

“I haven’t really looked at the Cyber Monday deals just yet,” Lazarus said.

Hanschmidt, who is in town from Florida visiting family, added, “I’d like to have a good, festive sweater for the holidays.”

And if you don’t want to wait on shipping, Phillips has another reason to get you back to the mall this week.

“A lot of our retailers offer a buy online, pickup in-store service—like Sephora and Bath and Body Works—where you can actually do all of your shopping online before you come, but then pick it up and have it be ready for you when you get here,” he said. “I think that’s a great benefit.”

As West County Center wraps up a busy Thanksgiving weekend, employees know this is just the beginning of the holiday shopping season.

“We also look forward to the week before Christmas and then, actually, the day after Christmas,” Phillips said.