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'A labor of love for all of us': Pizza in high demand ahead of Christmas weekend

The days leading up to Christmas are some of the busiest for local pizza places.

PHOENIX — Joy is found in many ways during the holidays, but at Twisted Pies Pizzeria, it's found in pizza.

The nights leading up to Christmas are typically some of the busiest for pizza places, and that's no different for the family-owned pizza joint in Mesa.

"I'll take credit for that even though they make it back there," said Nani Pickell with a chuckle.

Pickell runs the business with her husband and two children.

"A labor of love for all of us," she said. "It's a lot of hard work and we've had almost every family member work here at one point or another."

Tables are full and phones are usually ringing. However, the days leading up to Christmas it's nonstop. 

"It has become quite a busy time," said Pickell. "Everybody's home visiting family and they're looking for comfort food, something nostalgic to make them feel good and there's nothing better than pizza, fresh pizza."

Evan Coon, otherwise known as the Pizza Master, knows what it's all about.

"Just a lot of fun, that's what it is," he said. 

The past few days, Coon said everybody has been working hard with the number of pizzas made possibly surpassing 120, comparable to the day before Thanksgiving when pizza is usually the go-to for families.

"We'll always order pizza right before because it's easy," said customer, Kimeley Love. "Just having everyone together is a gift. It's a time where we're shopping together, eating together, it's the holidays, it's family. And the pizza is really, really good."

No, it doesn't matter the topping, pizza brings smiles.

"It's always nice to have a good, cooked meal that everybody loves," Pickell said. "Christmas is absolutely my favorite, most unique time of year."

And makes the holidays, merry and bright.

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