Wirth Watching: When shopping was an event

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - As we enter the busiest shopping season of the year, Craig Wirth takes us 50 years back to a time where shopping used to be an event, an all day activity.
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - As we enter the busiest shopping season of the year, Craig Wirth takes us 50 years back to a time where shopping used to be an event, an all day activity.

Back then Utahns dressed up to shop and the destination was probably a cluster of department stores in downtown Salt Lake City.

People really did crowd the downtown Salt Lake City streets in the 50s. Somehow a photographer found enough space on a sidewalk to take pictures.

The shoppers dashed through their routes long before there were malls.

No where were those streets more crowded than here on 3rd South where you had the Paris, Keith O’Brien’s and Aurbachs on the corner.

Those who experienced these days remember it wasn’t just a quick trip to find two wicker chairs for $9.49.

“It was an event. You didn't just go every day, it was a special event and you dressed. I didn't see anyone in levies or cut offs or anything like that, “said Howard Jorgensen, longtime Salt Lake resident.

You went a few doors down to Keith O’Brien where they were selling enough china to feed your whole neighborhood.

You just saved enough to really spend at the next stop. Remember the great bargains downtown. It was an event each counter was full of excitement.

Then you passed at the ZCMI counter for a refreshment.

You had made it four blocks and the best things at life were all downtown.

ZCMI was the last stop as Howard Jorgensen remembered those magic days when shopping was an event. The day was over and time to drive home.
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