Mellow Black Friday in Morgan Hill

Shelly Opsal puts away her Black Friday purchases at the Morgan

There were no shoppers dousing others with pepper spray to stay
away in Morgan Hill Friday morning: Black Friday this year was
relatively calm, unlike in Los Angeles where one woman sprayed
another to keep her from getting to the special sale
merchandise.
There were no shoppers dousing others with pepper spray to stay away in Morgan Hill Friday morning: Black Friday this year was relatively calm, unlike in Los Angeles where one woman sprayed another to keep her from getting to the special sale merchandise.

Although retailers opened their doors earlier than normal, the Black Friday crowds by Friday morning at 8 a.m. were causally browsing the special sales, the excitement died down much like any other shopping day in the year.

Morgan Hill Target store manager Olivia, who did not want to include her last name, said Friday midnight madness shoppers who waited in line for the story to open was estimated at about 400 to 500 people this year. She believes the number to be a slight increase from last year.

“We have had great guests,” Olivia said. “We were really very excited to be open at midnight for the first time this year.”

Throughout the store, bins labeled “2-day sale” held special deals such as $10 pajamas or DVD’s for $5.99.

Shelley Opsal of San Jose, travelled to the Morgan Hill Target because she didn’t want to deal with large crowds of people at malls in San Jose.

“There’s no lines here, everything’s quiet. I love coming to Morgan Hill, it’s a great destination to come to,” Opsal said.

Sisters Sonya Borchers and Wendy Aven both of Morgan Hill, had lists in hand, crossing off items as they shopped through Target Friday morning. They began their morning at 6:30 a.m. at Wal-Mart.

“You have to be organized. You know, we’re not going to be out there at midnight and line up with our tents. We’re not crazy,” Borchers said. “You come in and you get what you get, and if not, it’s not meant to be. It has to be fun, if it’s not fun, then why are you doing it?”

The two sisters even cut in some Thanksgiving time the day before by going to Michael’s, a craft store in Gilroy, that was open from 4 to 10 p.m. they said.

Vicki Herrick, of Morgan Hill, shopped early at Target, but made a point not to attend the midnight madness.

“I signed a petition online against (the midnight opening),” she said. “For the employees and everything, everyone should be enjoying their Thanksgiving holiday.”

Herrick was shopping for typical household needs that were on sale because the economic downturn in recent years has made her budget tight.

“We have a child with special needs, so we’re on one income this year, have been for a couple of years now. We’ve definitely got hit by the economy. That’s why were shopping for typical household needs this time of year,” she said.

Also opening early for the first time before Black Friday officially began was at Wal-Mart in Cochrane Plaza, which opened its doors at 10 p.m.

Larry and Beverley Meyer of Morgan Hill, have gotten in line at 5 a.m. in previous years for electronics, but this year, they decided to skip out.

“We’d rather pay a little more than get up early and fight people,” Larry Meyer said of the crowds in the early morning rush.

The couple was looking at a 46-inch Sony LCD TV which was on a 2-day sale for $678 at Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, by nearly 9 a.m. the store had sold out.

The National Retail Federation estimated that 152 million U.S. shoppers will be out Black Friday weekend, which is up 14 million from last year’s numbers. It expects shoppers to spend $465.6 billion in holiday retail shopping this year, an increase of 2.8 percent from last year.

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