TUPELO – Retailers were bustling with shoppers hours before the sun came up Friday as part of the annual day-after-Thanksgiving events.
But before they shopped, the early morning customers spent their time fighting one of their biggest peeves – line jumpers.
Black Friday historically is one of the busiest shopping days of the year and the traditional kickoff to the Christmas shopping season. It’s known for large crowds gathering and even camping out for early morning doorbusters.
This year was no exception.
Shoppers started lining up at Best Buy at 12:30 Thursday afternoon. As the hours ticked by, lines formed throughout the night at other retailers such as Walmart, Kohl’s, Scrugg’s, Belk, Sears, JCPenney and Lowe’s.
Many of the shoppers braved hours in frigid temperatures, with the thermometer dropping down to 34 degrees early Friday morning. Most of them said they did it for the adrenaline rush and because it’s a family tradition to shop on Black Friday. The second most-voiced reason was the desire to get a good bargain.
“When you have six children, you have to do the best you can do,” said Beverly Speed of Pontotoc, who was waiting at 1:45 a.m. at Walmart for the chance to buy a $300 laptop at 5 a.m. “I do it for the bargain prices and it’s also fun for me to come see the crowds … What are you losing? Nothing but sleep. By 5, I’ll be done and heading home.”
She was standing next to Tawana Dearing of Tupelo, who had her shopping cart full of Christmas goodies.
“I’m here for the rush,” Dearing said. “I could do without all this stuff, but I like the rush.”
Read more in Saturday’s NEMS Daily Journal newspaper.
Carlie Kollath/NEMS Daily Journal