Last-minute Gardens shoppers, here are tips for keeping your sanity

The Gardens Mall is hosting a fundraiser for survivors of the Orlando shooting and their families. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post)

The Gardens Mall closes at 6 p.m. Christmas Eve. (Kevin D. Thompson/The Palm Beach Post file photo)

The clock is ticking to find the perfect presents.

There’s no shortage of places to pick out gifts in Palm Beach Gardens, but the shopping destinations will probably be crowded with everyone else who procrastinated. Here are some tips for navigating two of Palm Beach Gardens’ biggest places to shop.

Downtown at the Gardens

Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday

Best time to visit: The best time to come if you’re shopping with kids is during the day, when they can ride the carousel or play at Cool Beans Indoor Playground & Cafe, said Marketing Director Carla Davis. There’s also a light show set to music at 6, 7, 8 and 9 p.m. every day through Jan. 1.

The least crowded time, though, is probably in the early afternoon before dinner, around 3 or 4 p.m.

Where to find parking: The parking garage behind The Cheesecake Factory on the east side is always free, as are the parking lots around the perimeter. There are also three valet parking areas at the south, west and east entrances.

The lights are strung on the palm trees and shrubbery at Downtown at the Gardens, where the Season of Light show premieres Saturday. (Sarah Peters/The Palm Beach Post)

The lights are strung on the palm trees and shrubbery at Downtown at the Gardens, where the Season of Light show runs through Jan. 1. (Sarah Peters/The Palm Beach Post file photo)

The Gardens Mall

Hours: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Christmas Eve

Best time to visit: Avoid crowds by coming early in the morning, said Special Events and PR Director Erin Devlin. It gets a little bit quieter in the evening before closing time, too.

A pop-up shop featuring gifts from almost two dozen stores has moved into the second floor, along with a free holiday gift wrapping suite where you can also charge your phone and watch classic holiday movies.

The mall also launched a text concierge this year to answer shoppers’ questions: 561-440-4440. The concierge staff has been answering questions about parking, the location of stores and the waits at Santa and the Apple Store, Devlin said.

Where to find parking: There’s ample parking at all of the lots and valet parking at BRIO Tuscan Grille and P.F. Chang’s.

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