This Black Friday Brooklynites packed big-box stores across the borough to chase deals and get the jump on their holiday shopping.
And we mean packing them. One newbie shopper at Target, Atlantic Terminal Mall’s biggest outlet, quickly realized that morning that she could not treat Black Friday like a normal trip to the store.
“This is the first time that I had went out on Black Friday,” said Heather Nocco. “I learned that the carts are not a thing to use. I had a cart and it was hard to get through all the aisles.”
But the struggle to move through the crowds was worth it to the hardy stocking-stuffer, who scored photo frames for $6 that originally sold for $12.
Others were just there for the experience.
“I just wanted to bring them out to see what it is like on Black Friday,” said Gail Padmore, near the mall’s Uniqlo store, gesturing to her two young children. “It’s about as crowded as expected. At least I can bring my son out here without him getting lost.”
Target opened at 8 pm on Thursday, making it one of many stores across the city to start Black Friday early for Thanksgiving’s capitalist cousin, dubbed “Gray Thursday.”
On the Atlantic Avenue sidewalk outside the shopping center, bag-laden deal-chasers joined crowd-averse passersby to peruse old winter coats and thumb-worn books on folding tables at the Brooklyn Free Store, a mobile, weekly event organized by anarchist types who think money should be abolished.
Further down Flatbush Avenue, Best Buy monopolized most of the two-day shopping fever, with some daring consumers waiting in lines for as long as eight hours to get a shot at deals on electronics.
One mother-daughter duo spent the entirety of Turkey Day sitting outside the chain’s location in the Kings Plaza Shopping Center on Avenue U.
“It was cold; it was windy; it was freezing,” said Andrina Jarvis, who showed up at 9:45 am with her 16-year-old daughter Megan, making them first in a long and dedicated line awaiting the store’s 6 pm opening.
The pair huddled under blankets to stave off the icy winds but maintained a rosy outlook to accompany their rosy cheeks with the help and good cheer of their fellow digital gear devotees.
“It was like a nice family group,” she said. “We had a wonderful time.”
Jarvis’s patience paid off in the form of a $200 Nikon Coolpix camera; an $80, 24-inch Insignia television; and a $180, Dell laptop computer.
Over at the Best Buy in the Caesar’s Bay Bazaar in Bensonhurst, a few red-eyed consumers showed up at 7 am on Thursday for a crack at the store’s Best offers.
Bensonhurst local Vernoica Torres, 30, was willing to brave the chill and forego Thanksgiving in order to take home a 65-inch Samsung flat-screen television that usually retails for $2,000 for a mere $900.
But the big savings may not be all they seem. Retail experts say that the sale price of the merchandise is factored into the original price, allowing stores to charge high on an item for a while, then sell a bunch all at once at a low-but-profitable number.