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Marathon shoppers search for bargains in West Virginia

November 23, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthewu@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Thanksgiving dinner was fueling Emmanuel Sanni through more than 12 sleepless, shopping-filled hours of Black Friday.

Sanni’s marathon of shopping began about midnight at the Spring Mills Walmart.

“Did not sleep,” the Martinsburg resident said outside Dick’s Sporting Goods at The Commons near Martinsburg about 1:45 p.m.

Sanni went to Walmart to get an Xbox for about $100 less than the retail price.

Mission accomplished.

Stops at Valley Mall in Hagerstown, Columbia (Md.) Mall and finally at The Commons shopping center near Martinsburg also were part of the adventure.

“We’re just finishing up now,” said Sanni, smiling wearily.

While retailers lured thousands of residents to open their wallets even earlier for the traditional beginning of holiday shopping season this year, others like Martinsburg residents Becky Hutchinson and her daughter, Rachel, resisted the marketing push.

They were among thousands of shoppers who helped keep parking lots mostly filled and checkout counters crowded into the afternoon Friday.

“We let all the crazies go first,” Rachel Hutchinson said before they went into T.J. Maxx about 1:30 p.m.

Neither had shopped at all, they said.

“We’re just looking for some bargains,” Hutchinson’s mother added.

Outside the Target store in The Commons, Chrystal Barcomb of Inwood, W.Va., said her shopping day didn’t begin until about 7 a.m.

“I better be getting some credit for being a good mom this year,” said Barcomb, who said she “gave in” and bought her son a popular video game, among other purchases.

At Martinsburg Mall, Jamila Richardson of Martinsburg said she had no trouble purchasing the toys and clothes for her children in about two hours Saturday afternoon.

Snydena Jones of Hedgesville, W.Va., said the only reason she was at the mall Saturday was to buy a pair of shoes for one of her children.

“I don’t like to deal with the traffic ... the crowds,” said Jones, who was joined by her mother, Lula Vohrer.

“I’ve only been Black Friday shopping two times ... and that was it, I never went back,” Vohrer said while eating a Subway sandwich with her daughter in the mall food court. 

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