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Last-Minute Shoppers Feel Christmas Eve Pressure

The clock was ticking Friday, and Kevin Slinsky knew it.

With only a day to complete his Christmas shopping list, Slinsky stopped at P.C. Richard & Son off Connecticut Avenue in Norwalk to make nine people smile upon unwrapping a big box underneath the tree Saturday morning.

"I'm looking for speakers, and most of them are sold out. I'm feeling the pressure," Slinsky said as he perused the electronics on sale. Friday was make-or-break day for shoppers as they hit the malls, outlet stores and boutiques throughout Fairfield County in search of those last few items.

William Houghton, 73, of Stamford, joined his wife Rita in P.C. Richard in looking for a small television for one of their sons. Although there was plenty of traffic on Connecticut Avenue in Norwalk, he thought it might be busier.

The Houghtons said they began looking for gifts around Thanksgiving. Though some fear walking through malls and crowded stores, William Houghton embraces the Christmas Eve crowds as part of the holiday season. "It gets you into the spirit," he said.

Elmira Hovhannisyan of Norwalk completed her shopping at Kohl's, happily loading a coffee machine into the front seat of her car before hitting the road back home. "It's perfect," she said as she capped many days of shopping.

Slinsky said he figured to be busy up until the final minutes. After the speakers, he had to get his wife some winter clothing, including gloves and a pair of Ugg boots. "I can't find her size," he said.

Here's hoping he did.

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