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$1.99 A Gallon Gas In Highland Park Draws Huge Crowd

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A new Thornton's gas station in Highland Park drew hundreds of customers when it opened with a promotion for $1.99 a gallon unleaded gas on Dec. 22, 2011. (Credit: CBS)

A new Thornton’s gas station in Highland Park drew hundreds of customers when it opened with a promotion for $1.99 a gallon unleaded gas on Dec. 22, 2011. (Credit: CBS)

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HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. (CBS) – A gallon of gas was a huge bargain in north suburban Highland Park on Thursday, but the bargain didn’t last for long.

As CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports, when a new Thornton’s gas station opened for business on Thursday, gas was going for $1.99 a gallon for a couple hours.

The promotion lasted only two hours, but it drew hundreds of drivers eager to take advantage of a price that seemed like it was from 1999.

Most drivers were patient as they waited for the cheap gas, but others weren’t so patient. One customer tried to cut in line, prompting an angry confrontation at the gas station.

With waits of 30 to 45 minutes, cars weaved through the snarled traffic in and around the parking lot on Skokie Valley Road, bypassing another gas station across the street.

College student Michael Lorusso said the huge line was worth the wait.

“Yeah, I’m expecting to wait about 30 to 45 minutes and I’m gonna,” Lorusso said, even though his car was about to run out of gas. “For $1.99, I’m a college student, on a budget, so this is definitely worth the extra $10 I’m gonna save.”

“I was just driving through here and I was gonna work out and I saw the sign for $1.99. I almost had an accident,” Nancy Gelman said. “So excited, I wanted to take a picture of the pump to show that it says $1.99.”

Gelman did take a picture of the pump after filling up her tank.

The promotion was supposed to run from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., but there were still plenty of cars in line at 6 p.m. The vice president at the gas station said they would hand out vouchers to drivers who were already in line so that they could use in the future for $1.99 a gallon gas.

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