Video: Black Friday Shopping Starts Early
People started shopping at the stroke of midnight at Great Lakes Mall
Thousands of shoppers got the earliest possible start at midnight on Black Friday in Great Lakes Mall.
One of those Mindi Kikel, who said she had never gone shopping on Black Friday before.
"I just like the commotion because there's so many people. It's exciting," she said, standing outside of the Toys 'R Us store with a friend.
Jennifer Praniewicz came to the mall with eight of her family members.
"It's just for fun and adventure," she said. "We were all together for Thanksgiving, so we thought, 'Hey, let's go at midnight. They're giving away prizes.'"
The first 100 shoppers in the Macy's concourse received a free goody bag. Additionally, DJ Jesse Webb entertained shoppers in the early morning hours and gave away gifts from stores in the mall.
The mall will have different entertainers throughout the day, including a flautist, saxophonist and singers.
Renee Lanzara, the mall's marketing director, said the midnight opening was a hit.
"It's a lot easier to stay up late than it is to wake up early," she said. "If you're like me, this is your prime time."
About seventy of the malls stores opened early, hoping to get a slice of the holiday shopping pie. In the past, only a handful of stores had opened at midnight with most opting to open at 5 a.m.
However, the midnight madness at the mall may become an annual occurrence.
"I don't mean to predict 365 days in advance but you can probably look forward to a midnight opening next year," Lanzara said.