With barely enough time to shake off a turkey coma, hundreds of area residents lined up outside big box retailers as early as Thanksgiving afternoon to partake in the tradition of Black Friday.
Shoppers, who lined up 100 and 200-deep in front of retailers like Best Buy, Target, and before the stores opened their doors at midnight, ran the gamut of those looking for random deals to others who had mapped out elaborate shopping strategies. Black Friday is widely regarded as the biggest shopping day of the year.
Karen Howe of Northville was wrapped in a blanket outside of at Haggerty and Six Mile Road in Northville in the hopes of snagging a $350 Hewlett Packard laptop.
“My daughter’s computer needs to be repaired and it’s going to cost a lot to repair it,” she said. “With all of the upgrades, it’s time for a new one. This one has a large screen which is what she wants.”
Howe, who was waiting at 4 a.m. in front of Office Depot, began shopping at midnight. She has also visited Target where, despite the fact that every lane was open, the line of shoppers waiting to check out stretched throughout the store.
Rachel Pyle, 22 and of Livonia, waited outside of Kohl’s in Northville, ad in hand, at 11 p.m., an hour before the store opened.
“I even waited in line to get the ads for Black Friday,” she said. “I read every ad, and wrote down everything I wanted, and made a plan from there. I plan on going to Target, JC Penney’s, , and to Toys 'R Us to get everything I’m looking for.”
The item on Pyle’s list for Kohl’s was an iPod docking station which is on sale for $34.99. The item’s retail price is $64.99.
Over at Best Buy in Novi, the line for typically-expensive electronics was made up of at least 200 people by 11 p.m. That didn’t bother 20-year-old Ryan Lee Hurst of Livonia, who had dinner with his family before making the trip out to Haggerty Road.
“I was here to get one of the 42-inch TVs but I found out they were out of them,” he said. “But there are still some other things I want."
The television, which was on sale for $199, was a ticketed item that is reserved for the first people in line that wish to buy the coveted item. According to shoppers, each store had about 20.
Livonia resident Kacie McCullogh, 27, said she was also attracted by Office Depot’s computer prices.
“I’m looking at the Gateway laptop,” she said. “I also wanted to look at other items in the store.”
McCullogh, who was wrapped in a blanket as well, said she was thankful for reasonable weather.
“Last year, it was really cold,” she recalled.
Though high-profile retailers attracted many customers, lower-key stores also attracted shoppers for that very reason.
Jeremy Smith, 36 and of Canton Township, waited in front of ABC Warehouse on Ford Road with a group of about 30 people in the pitch dark, with only a blanket and space heater.
“ABC Warehouse did not heavily advertise, so I think I will have a better chance getting what I want,” he said.
Though the deals were what attracted shoppers to the stores, many also felt Black Friday was a tradition.
“My husband is 30 years old, and he’s gone shopping on Black Friday for every year of his life,” said McCullough.