It was 70 degrees on Halloween, but in Bryant Park, visitors were already doing holiday shopping — picking out Christmas ornaments and woolen sweaters for loved ones at the annual holiday boutique.
A bit strange for some, but welcome for all.
In addition, a huge ice skating rink was open to the public, even on this balmy Halloween afternoon where students coming from school took the opportunity to slap on skates.
Some thought it a bit strange, after all, the fountain wasn’t frozen yet. But most were more than happy to do some early shopping and skating.
Steven Maranucci and Anna Belardi a student at FIT and both from Westchester, strolled through the boutique dressed as Peter Pan and Tinkerbell and said they were “somewhat bewildered.”
“It’s a very conflicting feeling — two different holidays kind of in one,” Maranucci said tipping his green cap. “It’s like 70 degrees making it the weirdest Halloween ever.”
Destiny Bella and her friend Gio Velez of the Bronx, both 15, skated on the fresh ice – despite the warm temperatures, Bella’s pink hair flowing in the wind.
“I skate all year,” Bella said. “For me, its not really for Christmas, it’s a sport for us, it feels good to be back here with all my friends here in Bryant Park.”
Lisa Mo was selling winter hats, scarfs and sweaters despite the warm temperatures.
“It’s exciting to be here, the ice rink is open and we are wrapping up warm hats for people,” Mo said. “They see these hats and they love them so they are preparing for the winter. It is never too early.”
Maly Castaneda was selling traditional Mexican items, and a regular customer Elba Leon of Sunnyside, Queens was buying for the Mexican celebration of The Day of the Dead.
“I was waiting for the moment — I love to be in Bryant Park,” said Castaneda as she showed off all her hand-made items. “People are buying holiday goods. Why leave it for last moment?”
Yoav Iram and Christina Scherer opened their shop, Sweetwater Labs and were selling holistic products designed to bring good karma and zen to the public, their oils and scents wafting through the aisles. Iram was wearing gym shorts and t-shirt.
“We have energy stones, good natural skin care products, made here in New York and it is never too early to buy anti-aging products and we give free gift wrapping for the holidays,” said Scherer as customers looked over the shelves.
Raymond Vega of the Bronx was selling stuffed animal pillows and “Every day is Christmas shopping thought it is a little slow so far,” Vega said. “The weather is crazy, but honestly, the earlier you start the better because at the end of year you don’t have to worry about spending so much money.”
Mel Smith was shopping for Christmas ornaments with sons Daniel and Jake. She said her home in England, “they don’t do anything like this”
“It is a bit bizarre,” she said, “but we love it.”