Black Friday shoppers line up early, stay out late in search of bargains
Amber Rager, left, and Jaden Barnes already have their hands full of their Black Friday shopping finds by 12:30 a.m. Friday at Valley Mall. (By Yvette May/Staff Photographer / November 23, 2012)
“I am now headed to the Chambersburg (Target) store,” she said.
At the Walmart store on Garland Groh Boulevard, the metal barricades put in place on Thursday night for crowd control had been removed by late morning Friday.
Jeanne Brittingham, of Hagerstown, said she did not quite agree with the stores being open on Thanksgiving Day.
“I’m happy to wait till today. The employees deserve a day off,” she said.
But not everyone felt that way.
Black Friday shoppers looking for deals filled stores that opened at midnight Thursday, along with those that opened earlier than that.
Traffic was going in and out of the parking lot at Valley Mall at midnight and at 1 a.m. Friday morning, with almost all of the parking spaces near the mall filled.
Every part of the mall appeared to be crowded at one point. In addition to Old Navy, long lines formed in Victoria’s Secret in the mall. Those stores appeared to be two of the busiest in the mall early Friday.
Hagerstown resident Briar Dalton, 18, said she arrived at the mall just as it opened. This was the first time she took part in the early morning Black Friday rush.
“I wanted to see all the excitement and everyone come out,” she said. “I don’t really have a particular thing I’m looking for.”
Shoppers also flocked to Kohl’s across from Valley Mall.
At Kohl’s, which opened at midnight, customers circled around the inside of the store waiting in line to purchase their products.
The store had power hours and early bird specials that included up to 60 percent off some items. Fairfield, Pa., resident Yvonne Stahley, 69, said she was looking for electrical appliances at the store.
“I shouldn’t be out this time of night,” she joked. “I just like to be out and see what’s available. I want a toaster.”
Stahley said she and her family began their shopping at 7 p.m. Thursday at Walmart in Chambersburg before driving into Hagerstown.
In addition to lines inside stores, lines also formed outside stores before they opened.
Matt Dawson, general manager of the Best Buy on Garland Groh Boulevard, said that between 400 and 500 people were lined up outside waiting for the store to open at midnight.
“We started letting people in around 11:30 p.m. to get them out of the cold,” he said.
Best Buy, according to Dawson, was selling a 40-inch television for $187 as part of its Black Friday special. Dawson said that even though the store would be busy all day, the rush of people does bring a “level of excitement.”