Shoppers comb stores for Black Friday success - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Shoppers comb stores for Black Friday success

Updated:

NILES, Ohio - It's the official start to the holiday shopping season.

Stores were packed as bargain hunters welcomed the opportunity to scoop up deals even before their turkey dinners were digested Thursday night.

While some may have missed out on a few extra hours of shuteye, the savings were enough to entice them to join the crowds at Eastwood Mall.

"We got some electrical appliances that my daughters were interested in for Christmas," said Liberty Township resident Amy Camardese.

Into the mid-afternoon hours, shoppers were leaving stores like Toys "R" Us in Niles with big bags and boxes filled with what could be a surprise for under the tree.

Retailers are hoping Friday's sales are a sign of what to expect through Christmas as Black Friday is the day when retailers traditionally turn a profit for the year.

"We're trending pretty close to last year, which is pretty good," said Michelle Fraelich, Dillards store manager at Eastwood Mall. "We had a light morning, but things are picking up and really looking forward to ending the year with another increase."

Fraelich said discounted big ticket items like Coach and Michael Kors handbags were top sellers on Friday.

The National Retail Federation estimates sales through the month and in December will rise by 4.1 percent to total more than $586 billion.

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