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Early Start For Black Friday Doesn’t Discourage Crowds

Woodfield Mall opened at midnight this Black Friday for the first time. While busy all day, crowds were much more manageable by the morning than when the mall opened. (Credit: CBS)

Woodfield Mall opened at midnight this Black Friday for the first time. While busy all day, crowds were much more manageable by the morning than when the mall opened. (Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) – It was midnight madness at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg on Black Friday, as thousands of shoppers rushed in to get their hands on some pretty big deals. The early start on Friday meant crowds thinned out significantly by the time the sun was up, but mobs returned later in the day.

CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports the doors at Woodfield opened at midnight for the first time, and while there was a mad rush to get inside.

History was made at Woodfield this Black Friday, as it opened most of its 300 shops at midnight for the first time ever.

Many shoppers went right from eating Thanksgiving turkey on the table to waiting in line for Black Friday deals at the mall.

“I wanted to get great sales at Abercrombie,” Mia Granata said.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Dave Berner reports

Anna Simento said, when the doors opened at midnight, “It was really crowded, and then it’s like we have to wait for a lot of time in line.”

Eight hours later, plenty of tired bodies needed a break.

Tara Kelly said she was dying to get home.

“I cannot wait to get home. I can’t wait to get in the shower and go to sleep,” she said.

Several stores and hundreds of dollars after starting her shopping spree, Kelly was out of there.

“It’s fun. You know, a lot of people don’t think that it’s worth it, but it’s the fun of it,” Kelly said. “It’s like when you’re in Vegas, and you don’t know what time it is.”

Niki Spalleto said she and her sisters go Black Friday shopping every year. They like getting good deals, but it’s about more than just shopping for them.

“You’re supposed to spend time with your family,” Judy Spalleto said. “We had a big dinner, and we were in kind of a food coma at that time.”

Kristin Spalleto said, “We looked through the flyers last night, picked out what we wanted, and then came to the stores.”

The Spalleto girls went to Woodfield at 5 a.m., and missed the peak crowds.

“The lines are shorter than we thought,” Niki said.

“We had parking spots right up front, which has never happened,” Judy said.

The parking lot at Woodfield was full at 2 a.m., but just a few hours later, parking was much easier as many shoppers had cleared out before dawn.

Tammy Milligan said, “We got rock star parking.”

Milligan skipped the midnight opening, and showing up later turned out to be a blessing.

“This isn’t very busy, at all,” she said.

There were still a lot of people inside late Friday morning. CBS 2’s Mike Puccinelli reports the 10,000-space parking lot at Woodfield was filled to capacity later Friday.