ST. CLOUD - With the holiday shopping season just a few weeks away, the Crossroads Mall is gearing up for its busiest time of the year.

Darcy Eigen, general manager of the Crossroads Center, says stores will have the option to open early on Thanksgiving.

"We know Thanksgiving is important for families, so this year we're giving stores the option to open on Thanksgiving. We're going to have the mall open from 6:00 p.m. to Midnight and it's optional for them to be open. Right now we have 90 percent who want to be open."

H&M is opening their new store in the mall on Thursday at noon. Other stores to open at the mall recently include Fur and Feathers (pet related items) and Games by James (Board games, puzzles).

Eigen says they expect a slight increase in Christmas shoppers this year.

"We are expecting a slight increase. We feel our traffic has continued to grow this past year, so we're hoping for the same this holiday season."

Families at the mall will also have the option to save time by reserving a date/time online to get pictures with Santa.

For more, check out the Crossroads Center website.