Black Friday shoppers brave cold, return to stores: ‘It’s kind of exciting’

After Black Friday in 2020 came with smaller crowds because of worry about the coronavirus pandemic, shoppers returned to area stores on a cold morning today — but crowds were not as big as before the pandemic began.

Outside the Best Buy in Beavercreek, brothers Nathan, Alexander and Andrew Padilla were first in line.

Credit: Marshall Gorby

Credit: Marshall Gorby

The brothers said that they got up at around 3:25 a.m. to get in line for a chance at a Playstation 5.

When asked if they believed the store would have one, Andrew replied, “What better time would there be but Black Friday?”

According to our crew on the scene, at around 5 a.m. the brothers stood in front of a growing line of around 100 people.

Best Buy shopper Jake Phillips, of Fairborn, said he and his fiancée woke up at 4 a.m. to get a Fire TV. They wanted another TV that cost $299, but the store was already sold out.

“This is the first time I’ve ever done this,” he said. “It’s kind of exciting.”

Best Buy shopper Clay Baker, of Troy, said he had scored a RAM card and some other computer parts for a deal on Friday morning.

He said he typically shops on Black Friday and tries to convince other people to come with him.

“A lot of people, I tell them to go Black Friday shopping, nah, getting up early, it’s not for them,” he said. “I like doing it.”

Sandy Van Etten, of Beavercreek, said she got a game and some smart light bulbs as Christmas presents. Van Etten said she typically goes Black Friday shopping, but this year felt different.

“This is actually the most boring Black Friday I have been to,” she said. “Usually there’s lots of people. So everyone must be online shopping this year.”

Tammy Bondurant and her daughter, Kendra Bondurant, were in line at 6:30 a.m. at the Beavercreek Target, looking for a laptop for Kendra. They brought a blanket they huddled under as they waited.

Tammy Bondurant said Black Friday shopping is a tradition in her family, and each of her four kids are allowed to come as they get older.

“Some of the stuff you can’t get online, that’s why it’s worth coming,” she said. “When you have four kids, it’s worth saving.”