He and his family were up before the sun rose on Black Friday, dashing from store to store in hopes of getting the best deals.
Four hours of purchases later, Phelan parked on a soft chair outside of a Bath & Body Works store in
"I'm hungry," he said. "I'm hoping they get out from there real soon, because it's time to eat some breakfast, and maybe some lunch, too."
Thousands of shoppers have flooded stores all over
The biggest draw across the board seemed to be technology: Shoppers were seen loading up large-screen televisions, game consoles and several other big-ticket items that had significant price reductions.
Several consumers picked up a 55-inch Samsung Smart HDTV originally priced at
Consumer confidence is rising since the election of president-elect
"People are getting out a lot," said Youngblood. "For a lot of people, they've already started their holiday shopping for the past several weeks. It's a good sign for overall sales."
The busiest shopping day of the year has only gotten more popular, according to experts. An estimated 137.4 million people -- a full 59 percent of Americans -- planned to shop on Black Friday, according to the
Moore, who works in the health insurance industry, wants to maintain a healthy lifestyle with her family. One workout system, priced at around
"We've been around, trying to see the best prices," said Moore, around
Not everyone was willing to brave the crowds late Thursday night or Friday morning.
She and her husband, Robert, have been volunteering with the
Frady said she wasn't interested in shopping after having worked for a few years at a retail store. Instead, she was more focused on fundraising for the poor and thinking about an upcoming trip to
"You get used to it," she said, of ringing the bell for donations for hours.
Phelan's day wasn't quite done, however. The family still had plans to hit a hardware store before settling down for a relaxing pancake brunch.
Phelan said his family had taken care of "about 90 percent" of the annual Christmas shopping, but said he would soon be back to take care of the rest.
The retail frenzy often gives a big lift to the local economy, said Youngblood. Local stores that employ temporary workers can help keep money flowing inside the county.
Youngblood said he feels more consumers are conscious of supporting local businesses. He said he's hoping customers take advantage of Small Business Saturday, a popular movement to help support non-chain stores.
"It's possible to use the
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