Holiday shopping season kicks off

Thousands ended Thanksgiving early to shop

Thanksgiving is not just about food and family, it’s also about the shopping.

Many retailers opened their doors Thursday evening giving shoppers a jump on Black Friday deals.

It’s called “Gray Thursday” an effort by some retailers to stretch the shopping season by opening on Thanksgiving.
Whether it was for a TV, a tablet or a favorite movie, hundreds stood in the cold weather for hours to get the perfect gift.

“My son really wanted a pair of head phones for Christmas,” Jason Yusten, a Best Buy shopper, said.

“My mom and my grandma really want me to get them a TV,” Jameson Marcou, a shopper, said.

Even if they weren’t really sure what they were supposed to get.

“My mom wants the new movie ‘Maleficent’ or whatever that goofy movie is,” shopper Douglas Kropeiln, said.

They braved the big and possibly dangerous crowds.

“All of the people are just all around and just like want stuff and they are all running around and fighting for it,” Marcus Mcilraith, a shopper said.

“It’s like the ‘Hunger Games’,” Jenna Johnson, a shopper said.

Once the doors opened police said everything went smoothly.

“I am just glad to see the people of our community they don’t do that they don’t run into stores and cause the chaos like we have seen in other places,” Sgt. Jasson Jobe, of the Onalaska Police Department, said.

Best Buy worker said Gray Thursday is getting bigger and bigger.

“We started a little bit later last year now we are starting earlier so this year it’s 5 p.m. last year it was like 7 p.m or 8 p.m.,” Jacodb Hustvet, a Best Buy sales manager said.

Even some diehard black Friday shopper said they like the new hours.

“It’s a little odd to be here at 5 p.m. on Thursday afternoon of Thanksgiving but it’s just a good deal and I like the idea that I am not getting up at midnight to go shopping,” Kropeiln said.

Best Buy manager said to not worry if you missed out on Thursdays deals. There will be plenty of sales and discounted items throughout the stores this weekend and online.