Black Friday comes early

Black Friday shopping sales
Shoppers come out in force on Black Friday. (photo by Steve Rhodes)

By Alicia Cleveland
Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year, and the beginning of the holiday shopping season. It’s the day when people wait outside of stores for hours before they open, hoping to be the first to get the hottest toy or the best early-bird deal.
Black Friday is also the day of the year that retail employees most look forward to. The fast-paced environment makes the long shifts go by faster, and the accomplishment of helping their company achieve its goal is one the employees strive for.
With stores including Macy’s, American Eagle and Old Navy opening at midnight – just hours after Thanksgiving dinner – employees at the Mall at Whitney Field in Leominster can only hope they can give Black Friday shoppers an enjoyable visit.
American Eagle Outfitters is one of many stores located in the Mall at Whitney Field preparing for the rush of Black Friday. With the company offering styles that attract men, women, and children, employees expect the upcoming Black Friday holiday to be a busy one.
“[The store] is hoping to go above and beyond their daily goal for Black Friday,” said Fitchburg State sophomore Kristen Liming, a sales associate at American Eagle. She said she is one of a team of 40 associates who are hoping to “serve each and every customer fully,” striving to “be the friend” that the customer can turn to for an opinion on a gift.
Old Navy’s “GobblePalooza” also starts at midnight, offering deals that include graphic T’s from $5 and jeans from $15.
Many other stores at the mall are also offering Black Friday deals – just not as early as midnight. Victoria’s Secret, opening at 6 a.m. on Friday, is offering a free “secret” gift card with any $10 purchase. The card, which can be used from Dec. 1 to Dec. 21, may be worth $10, $50, $100 or $500.
J.C. Penney will be opening at 4 a.m. Friday and will be offering “door buster” sales until 1 p.m. with sales on items such as “pillow pets,” kitchen appliances and luggage.
Employees of stores at the Mall at Whitney Field have mapped out their plans of action for Black Friday; that’s probably a good idea for all those who are planning to attend the day of sales, as well.