“For the first two hours it was good,” said Melody Smith, manager at the Shoe Department store in Mount Berry Square mall. “There was definitely more traffic this year because we opened at midnight.”
Tricia Dillard, Mount Berry Square marketing manager, said it was extremely crowded as shopping began.
“People were running into the mall,” Dillard said. “I know the lines were extremely long, and most of our stores beat their goals. A couple of them said that within the first two hours they had already made half of their day’s goal, so it was extremely good.”
Chris Holcomb, manager at Hibbett Sporting Goods in the mall, said his store was packed between midnight Thursday and 2 a.m. Friday.
“I know we had over a hundred people in the store at one point,” Holcomb said.
Mount Berry Square seems to be a magnet for shoppers from surrounding communities.
“Everything is close together,” said Wanda Gentry from Taylorsville. “There’s less traveling between parking spaces.”
Gentry and her friend Terri Cornette, also from Taylorsville, didn’t get to the mall until about 7 a.m. Friday.
“I never like to fight the crowds. I’m not an aggressive person,” Gentry said.
Cornette said the mall was just the ticket for the items they were looking to purchase.
“We weren’t looking for the big ticket items like TVs,” Cornette said.
April Floyd from Centre, Ala., and some of her friends got to the mall at about 4 a.m. Friday after an exhausting couple of hours at the Walmart and Kmart.
“It was like the Atlanta Zoo. We got clawed, kicked, screamed at, hollered at. We were trapped. It was horrible, so we decided we were going to come to Rome,” Floyd said.
Fay Cloud from Cartersville echoed that sentiment.
“We like to shop here because it’s not quite as crowded as it is in the Marietta area,” Fay Cloud said.
After being out all night, Kellen Cloud said the two had purchased everything they set out to get by 7:45 a.m.
“We are officially done. This was our last stop,” said Kellen Cloud.
Mark and Justin Cromer from Cedartown were also finishing up their shopping at the mall in Rome on Friday morning. They were out all night long and said they were able to find everything they were looking for.
What brought them to Rome? A one-word answer from Mark Cromer: “Sales!”
“We’ve been running wide open,” said Chris Bedford, assistant manager at the East Rome Walmart, 825 Cartersville Highway. “It’s been one of our best years.”
He said the store had 24 major items in its advertising circulars and sold out of every one of them.
“Some of the accompanying items we’ve still got our hands on,” Bedford said.
Technology seems to have given new definition to the old way of reading.
Renee Brown, store manager at Barnes & Noble, 1422 Turner McCall Blvd., said, “People seem really interested in our digital devices, our Nooks. They seem to be enjoying the sales we have for the weekend.”
She said the flow of traffic in the store had been steady most of the day Friday.