PHOENIX -- Ready, set, shop!
Black Friday frenzy has been in full swing at malls and stores throughout the valley today. Bargain hunters braved the crowds (and the early hours) to try to score the best deals of the season.
This year the shoppers started earlier than ever, with many stores opening late last night or at midnight, instead of the traditional early Friday morning openings.
One exception was the Cabela's store at 99th Ave. and Glendale Ave. At least 2,000 people were in line, anxiously awaiting door-buster discounts on items like rifles, smokers, camping gear and gift cards.
And when the doors opened at 5 a.m., the scene was chaos, as the huge crowd rushed the entrance.
“For us, opening up on Black Friday is tradition. We like to give our employees Thanksgiving Day off. It’s just something that corporate believes in,” says Rosie Martinez of Cabela’s.
A shopper named Victor drove all the way from San Diego to come to Cabela’s, “I got a ramp for my quad, a trailer for camping, some tools for camping, and a wheel cover for my truck,” he tells us.
Fry’s Electronics at 27th Ave. and Thunderbird Rd. was another store with a massive crowd outside. The line actually wrapped around the building.
The scene was the same at Sam's Club at 83rd Ave. and McDowell Rd., where patrons braved the chilly temps in the parking lot to line up for some deals.
The Target at Tempe Marketplace opened at 9 p.m. Thanksgiving night. Hundreds of shoppers went early to stock up on their favorite movies, toys and electronics. Store managers say things have been going smoothly, and that there should be plenty of merchandise left for those who are shopping today.
“When we decided to open our doors at nine p.m., we realized that not everyone is willing to leave their Thanksgiving and show up, so we still have quite a bit of door-busters left,” says one manager.
A new survey revealed some statistics about our city's Black Friday's Power Shoppers. WestGroup Research found that women are more likely than men to hit the stores early.
And if you decided to forgo shopping today, and instead opted to stay in, watch football and eat leftovers, you're not alone. The survey also found that while 16 percent of folks would be out shopping in full force, a whopping 83 percent would be staying home.