Black Friday attracts crowds to retailers throughout Vicksburg

Published 12:39 pm Friday, November 24, 2017

Early morning temperatures in the 30s weren’t enough to keep shoppers from lining up outside stores throughout Vicksburg hoping to snag a can’t miss deal on Black Friday.

Belk, located at Vicksburg Mall, was the first store to open Friday morning. More than 20 people braved the elements and waited patiently outside for the doors to open at 6 a.m.

Alisa Boyd and Chris Barnette were first in line last year after arriving at the store at 4 a.m. They were back this year looking for more deals, but realized that they didn’t have to get there quite as early this time around arriving closer to 5:30 a.m.

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“Mainly the home stuff like the kitchen stuff,” Boyd said of what deals they were looking for. “We like to cook. We realized last year we didn’t need to be here that early.”

Belk kicked off Black Friday shopping Thursday evening with more than 200 people waiting in line hoping to be the lucky winner of a $1,000 gift card or take advantage of the buy one, get two free deals being offered storewide.

“As far as sales-wise, traffic is a bit down, but compared to yesterday (Thursday) we’re pretty close to last year,” Belk store manager Tyfone Reed-Morales said. “Generally, as for yesterday versus today, it was a good turnout, better than expected. Today it did start out slow, but we are expecting that throughout the day it will pick up.”

Jennifer Muirhead was one of those who chose to start their Black Friday shopping Thursday by going to Walmart looking for deals on sheets and tupperware. She was then back at it Friday morning searching for more deals at Belk.

“I did a lot last night at Walmart,” she said. “That was plenty enough for me. It was crazy. Towels went flying, I was buried, bombarded, my daughter had to come rescue me. I come for the deals, the percentages off, the buy one get one and the hope to win the gift card.”

Those who chose to sleep in and not arrive at Belk before the crack of dawn were able to find deals aplenty next door at Dillard’s, which opened its doors at 8 a.m. to a long line of waiting customers.

Lisa Howe said she was in the parking lot at 8 a.m. looking to find deals on purses, wallets and sunglasses, which were marked 50 percent off their lowest clearance price. 

“They are so cheap,” Howe said while deciding between four different colored purses. “You can’t get a purse this cheap. Me and my friends always come so it is fun.”

The Black Friday shopping spree wasn’t limited to just the big box stores either. 601 Sports, located on Pemberton Boulevard, saw a steady stream of shoppers looking for deals on guns and clothes from the time the doors opened.

“We’re usually pretty busy,” Ryno Martin-Nez from 601 Sports said. “We get a lot more people in the store with all the sales, get a lot of foot traffic and move a lot of inventory. Today all clothing is 10 percent off and then we have selected racks of 50 percent and 75 percent off.”

The biggest sale at 601 Sports was a discount that made all guns tax-free for the day.

“We are taking the sales tax off all firearms and that is just what we’re doing,” Martin-Nez said. “This is our first year we’re doing the tax-free on the guns. On the statewide tax-free, we usually sell a bunch of guns so we wanted to try it this year and see what it did on Black Friday. So far, I think it’s going to be a good little deal for us. It is bringing lot of different people in.”