“You really get to know someone waiting in line with them all day,” Joyner said.
They all agreed that they would rather be home on Thanksgiving, but the savings that come from camping out at places like Target were enough to allow them to afford all of their Christmas shopping.
Down the way at Kohl’s the line wasn’t as long, but those in the front of the line were in similarly good spirits.
Amy Clark of South Bend and her boyfriend, Kyle Vanalstine of Elkhart, arrived at the front of the line at Kohl’s at 5:30 p.m. Diana Floyd of Elkhart also arrived at the same time. All three said they were veterans of the Thanksgiving/Black Friday shopping experience.
Clark’s wish list items included a pair of Nikes, while Floyd pointed at the HP printer she intended on leaving the store with.
“That one right there,” Floyd said joyfully as she drew her right hand from her coat pocket. She indicated that Black Friday shopping is something she does every year.
“I think it’s great,” she said. “And honestly I’d come even if I didn’t have anything to get. Just the people watching and getting to know the people in line makes it worth it.”
While for Clark and Vanalstine Thursday night meant getting an early start on Christmas shopping, it didn’t mean that every item on the shopping list gets crossed off.
“We’re too poor to get all our shopping done in one night,” Vanalstine joked.
Those in line at Kohl’s also said they passed the time by getting to know their line neighbors. Kohl’s staffers provided free coffee, handouts and credit card applications to pass the time, while other employees stood out front with bullhorns talking to the assembled shoppers and keeping them engaged.