The open house runs 5-8 p.m.Thursday, November 9.

Retailers are hoping to get a jump on “shop local” holiday buyers with an open house, four weeks ahead of the annual Fondren Unwrapped.

The Fondren Merchant Open House is Thursday, November 9 from 5-8 p.m., in the downtown Fondren historic district, spearheaded by the merchants of Fondren.

“This started as something I was going to do on my own,” said Barry Plunkett, owner of Interiors Market. “It just kind of took off from there.”

His store, along with Woodland Hills Shopping Center neighbors Glo, Brent’s, M Nicholas Collection, Au Courant Floral, McDade’s and Fondren Fro-Yo are joined by Treehouse Boutique, Mozingo Clothiers, The Pet Shop, Brown’s Fine Art & Framing, Nancy Price Interiors, Everyday Gardener, Joan Hawkins Art & Interiors and Beacon for the evening.

Promising holiday-themed libations, decorating advice and gifts sure to make even Santa jealous, Glo’s Anthony Ritter assured the same gusto for Unwrapped.

“The holiday open house won’t take the place of any of our efforts on December 7,” he said. “This is just a great warm up to get everyone in the holiday shopping frame-of-mind.”

What to Know:

• Fondren boasts nearly two-dozen locally owned restaurants, bars, bakeries and coffee shops. Most will be open, so plan to eat!
• Find a spot, park and walk. The footprint is a couple of giant blocks (between Old Canton and State Street, from Fondren Place to Duling Avenue). Wear comfortable shoes (and a coat: temperatures will be in the 50s).
• Bring the whole family (though there aren’t kids’ activities planned). On second thought, call the babysitter and make it a night out!
• Most if not all Fondren gift merchants offer free gift wrapping. Take advantage of it to save money and time.