Thousands packed the streets of Natchitoches Saturday for the annual Christmas Festival of Lights parade. The big crowd brings a welcome boost to the town's economy.
"This will actually be our busiest day of the year. It'll be our second highest sales day of the year," says Phyllis Stroud.
She owns the Rocking Horse Toy Store: "With this being our number two day, it's important that it's a good day."
A few doors down at Plantation Treasures, Bill Daniel says the increased foot traffic from the parade and the entire festival is vital to his business.
"On this one day, we do about a full month's sales in this store of a standard month," he says.
Daniel tells us his store makes about a third of its money for the whole year during the festival. He says last Christmas was the slowest one he's ever had, but this year is much better.
"This year we're about 15-percent higher than we were last year. So it looks like we're coming out of the doldrums of the bad economy."
The festival is still going on. For a list of events, click the link below.