Macy's gets into holiday spirit

November 3, 2009 (CHICAGO) It's part of their retail strategy to try and attract customers for what could be a slow holiday shopping season.

Decorations at Macy's for the holiday season started in mid-October. Preparation of the holiday themed windows display are already under way. This year's theme is 'believe' and 'how a letter gets to Santa Claus.'

Macy designers started early Tuesday morning preparing the historic great tree, featuring 10,000 sparking lights and 1,200 ornaments. It stands 45 feet tall.

"We're partnered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation one more time to donate up to a million dollars...even the great tree has the words off our belief meter that gauges and judges the belief in the holiday season," said John Jones, Macy's.

Reports of last year's consumer holiday spending were disastrous.

"Last year two thirds of consumers said they were planning to spend less for Christmas. This year it's more like 60 percent," said Ken Rice, Leo J. Shapiro & Associates. "They would like to spend more but a lot of people just do not have the money," said Rice.

Experts believe that Christmas spending is an indicator of consumer attitudes and confidence for the future.

"They don't have as much money to spend. We've been dealing with the recession for at least a year now....You still six out of 10 consumers are saying that they're concerned they may be subject to layoff or a loss of wages or hours," said Rice.

A big question this year is will be the key trends for Christmas spending.

"People are much more value conscious now," said Rice.

Macy's is counting on a great holiday season because they feel they have the right message to convey believing. The windows and the lights on the great tree in the Walnut Room will go on Nov. 7.

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