Black Friday shoppers started Thursday to find best deals

Even though it’s still called Black Friday, the shopping started on Thursday and runs through the weekend and beyond.

When there are deals to be had, there will be shoppers trying to take advantage of them. And it doesn’t matter how far they have to drive or what time of day.

For some shoppers, it might have been after 4 a.m. on Friday, but as long as the sun wasn’t up, it was still Thursday night. Just late, late Thursday night.

“It’s pretty nice actually, I don’t feel sleepy right now,” said Drew Turakhia of Silver Spring, Maryland.

He had come to the outlets at National Harbor with some friends who were visiting internationally and hadn’t see Black Friday in all its splendor. While he admitted he didn’t have much gas left in the tank, he also said “it’s going pretty well.”

Coming out of a children’s retailer, Tammy Payton of Lanham was with her future sister-in-law, Jennifer Hart, who came from Pennsylvania with her three daughters. They started their shopping around 7 p.m. Thursday when they hit some stores at the Bowie Town Center. By 4:30 a.m. Friday, they had a lot of bags and a lot of energy.

“She’s a shop-a-holic from Pennsylvania,” Payton said. “Blame her!”

It didn’t stop her from adding to her own closet.

“I don’t need another jacket,” exclaimed Payton. “But the deals are too good!”

Hart brought her daughters with her so they could pick out new clothes.

“They’re picking out stuff that they want … and we’re just putting it away until Christmas,” Hart said. “They’re not going to get it early, they know that.”

When Alfred of Silver Spring was asked why he was walking around the shopping center at 4:30 a.m. while his kids were home sleeping, and he wasn’t, he conceded: “You know, last time we came we got some really good deals and we’re getting them now again.”

Most of his shopping was for others, but after a pause he admitted there was a little bit for him too.

He was still on the other side of that thin line between Thursday night while everyone else was moving into Friday morning, and so he was ready to crash. But he also said he’d have to wake up when the kids do.

He wasn’t the only one who realized after the fact that this shopping might mess with their ability to function throughout the day.

“I’m definitely going to take off work tomorrow,” Payton said, before realizing, “actually it’s already Friday, so yeah, I’m not going to work.”

John Domen

John started working at WTOP in 2016 after having grown up in Maryland listening to the station as a child. While he got his on-air start at small stations in Pennsylvania and Delaware, he's spent most of his career in the D.C. area, having been heard on several local stations before coming to WTOP.

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