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On Thursday, after area residents pushed themselves away from the dinner table, many of them gathered at stores in the area in order to catch Black Friday deals.

Dozens of folks braved the cold, standing in line at Target for doors to open at 6 a.m., waiting to pick from the variety of sales.

Retail experts say the shift in shoppers' preference to online makes this holiday shopping season particularly crucial for troubled stores, despite the outlook for spending.

Sharon Shelton of Fredericksburg has always been a Black Friday fan, but she's seen interest change over the years. They wore plush reindeer antlers and rocked shirts reading "Black Friday Shopping Team".

Deal comparison website Tim Marr has found the best Chromebook Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for 2017.

But regardless of the reason, going out on Black Friday is a good chance to get a head start on holiday shopping.

In the United Kingdom, the Consumer Contracts Regulations gives online shoppers extra rights - for example you have 14 days to decide whether to cancel your order in addition to a 14 day returns period once your goods arrive, says Which?. "(Then) get to bed", said Detlor.

"Everybody likes Black Friday".

Store employees said they hoped more shoppers would stop by later in the day. After finishing Thanksgiving turkey, many shoppers headed out to get their hands on early deals.

"There's a few more people than normal but I wouldn't call this crowded at all", Deloitte auditor Eugenia Liew said as she shopped at discount retailer Target. The National Retail Federation forecasts sales to rise 3.6 percent this year, but also predicts 59 percent of shoppers plan to do their shopping online.

People wait in line to purchase electronics during Black Friday sale at a Best Buy store on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 23, 2017, in Overland Park, Kan.

"We have a bit of momentum and we had a good kickoff online", Foran told The Associated Press, "and with a bit of luck we are going to have a good 24 hours and be ship-shape for the weekend, and go from here to the 25th of December".


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