POWAY, Calif. (KGTV) — The Christmas season means joy, lights, and of course Santa — just a few of the things you will find at Poway's annual Christmas at the Barn.
"I've had this store for 13 years," says Countryside Barn Co-owner Liz McNamara. "We've always done Christmas, but Christmas exploded for us about seven years ago."
For two weekends in November, customers flock to their pop-up store, Christmas at the Barn. It's a Christmas haven for the holiday shopper.
"It's really become a big family tradition for our customers. They come with their friends, and we have three generations that shop together. We get customers coming from Palm Springs, Orange County, and from as far away as Las Vegas and Arizona," McNamara said.
From Christmas ornaments and trees to gnomes, and holiday signs, it's all about making the home merry and warm during the holidays.
"We try and bring those items to you that are unique and different," says McNamara. "Where your house feels like a home you want to be, and where you want to celebrate with your family and friends."
Of course, this year will be a bit different as in a COVID-19 version of Christmas. Last weekend the store had a line that went out the door. This weekend, as San Diego has entered the state's purple reopening tier, McNamara does not know what to expect.
"How many people are going to come? We don't know anything. We are limiting our capacity, we are requiring masks at all times covering the mouth and the nose, and we require the use of hand sanitizer at the door," she said.
Christmas is all about family and friends. This year, the pandemic will make it more restrictive — but that may mean starting to spread joy even earlier this year.
"Over decorate your house, and put your tree up now. Who cares, as long as it brings you joy and happiness. Do it, there are no rules this year. It's all about enjoying the season and making those special moments with the little bit of family you can. Just make it a merry Christmas," said McNamara.
Christmas at the Barn runs Nov. 12 - 15, and customers are encouraged to bring canned food, which will be delivered to the Poway Community Food Bank.