Belinda Ingram searched for the best deal on women’s boots at Belk on Black Friday. Belk was one of the many stores in Selma offering discounted deals on clothing, shoes and other merchandise. -- Sarah Cook

Black Friday shoppers swarm stores

Published 11:05pm Friday, November 23, 2012

For many, eating generous servings of turkey on Thanksgiving results in a lazy slumber. However for others, it gives them just enough energy to embark on an early morning and participate in the biggest shopping day of the year — Black Friday.

Selma was no exception to the Black Friday frenzy this year. Residents came out in herds to get the best deals on popular holiday items.

Lowanda Fitts, one of the managers at Belk in the Selma Mall, said this was the largest crowd she has ever seen on Black Friday.

“The line was almost wrapped around the building,” Fitts said of the those waiting to come in the store, which opened at midnight Thanksgiving.

Some of the many Black Friday deals Belk offered were boots for $19.99 and 60 percent off all children’s clothing. Fitts said the sales were so successful that she anticipates opening at midnight again next year.

J.C. Penny, also located in the Selma Mall, had many customers on Black Friday as well.

“We opened at 6 a.m. this morning and they came in like cattle,” said Brian Tarver, service specialist at J.C. Penny. “We’ve been very, very busy.”

Similar to Belk, Tarver said boots have been the popular item of the year, which the store offered at a discounted price of $15 to $25.

“They’ve just been flying off the shelves,” Tarver said.

Sharon and Amie Wilkins, an Orrville mother-daughter team who participate in Black Friday shopping every year, said they planned out their shopping based on who had the best sale.

“We’ve found all kinds of things,” Sharon said, who accomplished the bulk of her shopping at Wal-Mart. “We love doing this. Next we’re getting our Christmas tree.”

Like the large retail stores, smaller venues in downtown Selma experienced an influx of customers Friday morning.

Doris Butler Truax of Butler Truax Jewelers said her revenue this Black Friday tripled her total revenue from Black Friday sales last year.

“We’re real excited about that, we’ve been really busy” Truax said, and attributed high sales to residents experiencing “frugality fatigue.”

“The media has been saying for so long to be frugal because the economy isn’t good,” Truax said. “And that only happens for a limited amount of time and then people just start to want something new, something special.”

All About Me Boutique, also located downtown, offered several sales on Black Friday.

“We offered 25 percent off everything today,” said Logan Cole, sales associate at the boutique. “We thought everyone would be out of town for Thanksgiving, but I have never worked at the store when it is this busy. We’ve made a lot of sales today.”

Like many residents who woke up early to catch the sales, Cole said after today she’s ready “to relax and get some rest.”

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