Holiday Shopping Season Kicks Off

by Kelly Choate on November 25, 2011 at 7:24 am

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Tough economic times aren’t keeping people from swiping their credit cards on the biggest shopping day of the year.

"I got some good buys on jeans at American Eagle, Bath and Body Works had some pretty good sales, and JC Penney had Ohio State sales," said Cindy Campbell.

Marketing and Business Development Coordinator Kevin Pinson said a strong turnout would help wipe away fears of another recession.

"The crowd out here has been great," said Pinson.  "We see a lot of shopping bags going out the door.  I think the economy this year will be a little bit better than the holiday season last year.  We’ve turned the corner, and it’s going to be a slow recovery, but I think we’re heading in the right direction."

There’s a new trend this year – 15 retailers at the Colony Square Mall in Zanesville opened their doors at midnight on Black Friday.

"For the retailers’ employees, it probably does cut into their Thanksgiving dinner a little bit," said Pinson.  "Some of them have to be here the night before to set the floor and get ready for it.  I think for the shoppers, it’s a bonus, because they can really plan to hit several early bird specials at different locations."

There’s more to Black Friday than just great deals.  For many people, it’s a way to spend more time with family after the Thanksgiving holiday.

"My sister and I make this an annual tradition," said Carla Jarvis.  "We just come out and enjoy it, try and get some good deals and shop for the nieces and nephews."

Online sales are also expected to grow, and Cyber Monday is transforming into a week’s worth of savings, but for a lot of shoppers, it’s just not the same.

"There’s a lot of good things on the internet, but when you come out and physically get it yourself, that’s just the best thing," said Kyle Dunn.

If you didn’t battle the crowds on Black Friday, don’t stress, because stores will still offer discounts throughout December.

"Black Friday is when you’re going to find your best deals, but there are plenty of specials to be had for the next five weeks or so," said Pinson.  "Don’t despair if you missed out today because there’s plenty of opportunities."