Shoppers brave cold for Black Friday sales

Russell Anglin

A few Tucumcari shoppers braved early hours and cold weather Friday morning in hopes of catching advertised Black Friday discounts.

Eight shoppers browsed Radio Shack in Tucumcari when it opened at 5:30 a.m. One of these shoppers, Johnny Anaya, returned to his car empty-handed after finding out he had been beat to a discounted laptop. He had not yet come up with a backup plan for his prospective purchase.

“Best Buy later on? I regret waking up at 5:30 in the morning,” Anaya said with a laugh.

On Wednesday, Jeanne Benavidez, an Alco employee who has worked at the store nine years, said she was expecting a slight pickup in Black Friday shopping from previous years. She said her store typically experiences a surge in business during the holiday weekend. Both Alco and Kmart in Tucumcari were open during Thanksgiving.

Kmart’s parking lot was about half full Friday morning at 5:45. The store opened at 5 a.m. for Black Friday sales.

According to the International Council of Shopping Centers, Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, was the top U.S. holiday sales day and top holiday traffic day of 2009. This year the council projects Black Friday to top the list again, and 2010 holiday shopping is projected to increase by about 3 percent from last year.