Athens Shoppers Hit Stores Early

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The holiday shopping season is now pretty much over for two Athens women who were out early this morning at Walmart.

WOUB News talked with Sandi Tope and Elaina Sayres around 6 o'clock in the parking lot.

Tope told reporter Fred Kight that she's been taking advantage of Black Friday sales for approximately 20 years and this one was pretty much like the others in the past.

"You have a lot of people who are out to get a lot of presents," she says, "and then you also have some of those that have very short tempers and should have stayed home."

Tope says she expects to get nearly all her shopping done today.

"We were here earlier for the 8 o'clock sale.  We were here until about 10, then went home and caught a few hours sleep and then I was back here before 5 and then I'm also gonna hit another store at 7," says Tope.  "I think I'll get through it.  That's how we get more of our shopping done is with sales like this, especially in this economy."

Sayres has been going to day-after-Thanksgiving sales for 10 years and was disappointed she hadn't been able to save more money.

"It doesn't seem there's as many deals," she says.  "There's not very many people out."

"I don't like the idea of the sales starting on Thanksgiving," Sayres says. "That day is supposed to be with family and I feel bad for the employees having to work on Thanksgiving but with the economy you're kinda forced to have to do it.  If you can find something $100 cheaper, you have to do it."

How much of your shopping have you finished?

"I've done very well," Tope says.  "I've been out since midnight.  We're heading home now.  We've done very well."

Stores are hoping today marks the beginning of a strong holiday shopping season.

Sears was also open in Athens this morning and a handful of people were there.

Odd Lots was open, too, and had a fair number of cars in the parking lot.