While some of us were content to spend the night after Thanksgiving dinner digesting and taking in a football game or two, others were out hunting for bargains -- from electronics to clothing and everything in between.
For many, this hunt led to the Napa Premium Outlets for their Midnight Madness sale kicking off the Black Friday post-holiday sales season.
Brooks Brothers, which was one of a handful of stores that opened even before the planned midnight opening time, had a line of customers waiting patiently outside the door by 8:30 p.m.
"People are more willing to wait for bargains," said Rahula Hall, general manager of the Brooks Brothers store. He paused to remind me that their non-iron shirts were a favorite of Oprah Winfrey the talk show host, who featured them on a program last year. The shirt has proved a hot item since.
Employees at Ann Taylor Loft helped get the word out the old-fashioned way, explained manager Christina Hunstock.
"We handed out flyers to customers two to three weeks ahead of the sale," Hunstock said. "We've been prepared for the last month."
Some of the preparations involved handing out mesh shopping bags to busy customers and stocking up on "more accessories than usual," said Hunstock.
The atmosphere at Gymboree resembled a party at times, with customers and employees alike smiling and laughing while picking out items for the younger members of the family.
"We opened an hour earlier than last year," said assistant manger Lucia Wright, who was greeting and directing customers around the store by 10 p.m. They may open even earlier next year, she said.
"The mood here is great. We even had a group of girls singing Christmas carols," said Wright. "It's awesome"
Traci Gee, general manager for the Napa Premium Outlets, said that this year marked the 5th year the outlets have participated in the Midnight Madness promotion. She was pleased that people were having a good time while finding good deals.
When it comes to customer service,"Our stores have done a great job," said Gee. Gee suggests anyone looking for more information should visit the Web site, premiumoutlets.com.
The special hours for the After Thanksgiving Sale at the Napa Premium Outlets are from midnight through 10 p.m. on Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday.
For more about Black Friday, please see:
'Black Friday Creep' Spurs Petition Drives to Save Thanksgiving
"Black Friday" Shopping Begins in the Napa Valley
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