The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

November 23, 2012

Black Friday creeps into Thanksgiving permanently?

(Continued)

Joan Riedewald, a private aide for the elderly, and her four children ages six to 18, were among them. By that time, she already had spent about $100 at Toys R Us, which opened at 8 p.m., and planned to spend another $500 at Macy's before heading to Old Navy.

"I only shop for sales," she said.

But some shoppers decided to stick to traditional Black Friday shopping hours. Joe Russell was hunting for a great deal on a large flat-screen TV and went to the Best Buy store in Watertown, Mass., shortly after midnight on Friday. But the long line of shoppers gunning for door-buster promotions deterred him from braving the freezing temperatures. So Russell, 47, returned to the store after sunrise and got a different TV for "a decent price."

"This is the earliest I've ever shopped," he said.

Elizabeth Garcia, a sales representative from the Bronx borough of New York City, also decided on a later shopping start at about 3:30 a.m. at Toys R Us in New York's Times Square. As a result Garcia, who has three children ages three, five and seven, believes she dodged some of the lines on Thanksgiving when the store opened at 8 p.m. That's good news since the crowds got to her last year, and she almost got into a fight over a Tinker Bell couch.

"This year I wasn't about to kill people," she said.

Meanwhile, Nicole Page of Bristol, Conn., shopped with her sister at a Wal-Mart in Manchester, Conn., at about 4:45 a.m. on Black Friday out of tradition. Page, who recently finished school and started working as a nurse, bought an electric fireplace for $200 that she said was originally $600. Her shopping cart also had candy canes, a nail clipper for her dog and other stocking stuffers.

"We try to make a tradition of it. It's kind of exciting," she said.

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