Citizen Spotlight: Mike and Lisa Potts

Nestled in the quaint town of Dillsboro, there is a cozy white house that is open nearly every day of the year, which celebrates one of the most iconic seasons of the year.

Since 1969, Nancy Tut’s Christmas Shop is the perfect place to find just about any ornament anyone could possibly want. The owners, Mike and Lisa Potts, are locals of Dillsboro and have run the Christmas shop for 19 years when they bought it from the previous owner Betty Hamilton. Hamilton bought the shop from a former Western Carolina University professor’s wife, Nancy Tut. The happy couple is so in love with Christmas they even refer to themselves as “married to Christmas.”

The couple has never owned another business other than the Christmas Shop, which they found through Lisa’s sister when she attended WCU and worked parttime at the Christmas shop. The previous owner wanted to sell the store. Mike and Lisa took three days to decide they wanted to buy it and since then have loved every moment.

After purchasing the building, the Christmas couple have expanded and opened new rooms of the house to fit more ornaments and decorations. The house itself is 111-years-old and accentuates the traditional feeling of hominess and cheer one expects when they think of Christmas. A customer can find ornaments themed from everything including a casino, the beach, occupations, holiday pastries, farming, first Christmas and anniversaries. Lisa even personalizes ornaments and other items if a name is not already on it.

When asked about what he enjoyed most about his job, Mike Potts stated he enjoyed meeting new and repeat customers.

“It’s like doing business with your friends,” he said.

Lisa likes buying new ornaments and keeping the store organized, making it much more efficient to find any ornament imaginable.

The couple still adore Christmas, even when surrounded by it all year as they listen holiday tunes drift through the air every day. Lisa Potts’s favorite song is “The Little Drummer Boy.” Her favorite movie is “Christmas Vacation” while Mike Potts’s is “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

On Thanksgiving, Mike and Lisa Potts start decorating their own home for Christmas, which includes their three trees, and every year Lisa Potts gets herself a new Grinch ornament to add to her collection.

The most interesting ornament they have ever sold was a possum that said “the other white meat.” It sold out that season. Their bestselling ornaments are in the pet section of the store, with dogs selling slightly more than cats.

It is not just ornaments that are sold at Nancy Tut’s Christmas Shop, a customer can also expect to find school themed Christmas trees, Nutcrackers of all sizes, snow globes, a variety of Santa figures and display cases of Precious Moments.

The Christmas Shop is open 364 days a year, except Christmas Day; Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Contact the store at 828-586-5391 for more information.