I had never experienced "Black Friday" first-hand before photographing the madness last night and this morning for the Marin IJ. I guess I've always been the type of person who never really saw the need to go and camp out at 4 in the morning to buy something.
This year was a bit different for most companies. A group decided to open either on Thanksgiving night or right at the stroke of midnight on Friday. Best Buy was one of the big chains who had a line hundreds deep sneaking almost to the street in San Rafael.
Toys-R-Us has a jump on the competition letting in its first customers after 9 pm.The lines quickly grew long...
And the confusion for the shoppers only grew larger as they tried to find the great deals in the store.In Novato, Jennifer Abarca, 19, and her goddaughter Jennifer Lopez stood first in line since 2 pm on Thursday to buy a 46" inch LCD TV for $298 dollars at Target in Novato, Calif.
She wasn't the only one who had that idea.
Soon lines were crazy also at Target...
And traffic jams were common in the aisles.
While some celebrated getting the item they wanted...others were exhausted, as were Marco DeLa Rosa and Isela Hernandez after shopping at Kohls.
Some stores stuck to traditional early Black Friday openings. 11 year-old Andrea Cruz (center) smiles after she rubbed off a $300 dollar gift certificate to H&M while waiting in line for the store's 4 AM Black Friday sale opening at the Northgate shopping center. She was cheered on by her friends for her lucky find.
So all in all I can understand why people do it. It can be a lot of fun. You can get some great deals but its a completely overwhelming experience. Now would I do it again on my own if I was not on assignment? That's the question. You can read the Marin IJ article here.