Thousands of shoppers rush to Mall of America for Black Friday 2022 deals

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UPDATE: People who had been camping outside since Thursday afternoon poured into the Mall of America Saturday morning despite a year marked by historic inflation.

Mall of America officials say more than 10,000 people rushed inside within the first hour of opening on Friday.

The first people in line got to MOA at 4 p.m. on Thanksgiving.

“Opening our doors Black Friday morning to crowds of excited shoppers is a one-of-a-kind experience,” Jill Renslow, executive vice president of business development and marketing at MOA, said. “We have seen an incredible turnout today, which shows that people are ready to get back to their holiday traditions. At Mall of America, we offer a truly magical experience this time of year setting the perfect backdrop for our visitors to create special memories with their loved ones.”

The first 4,000 people received scratch-off cards with prizes valued at up to $600, mall officials say, while the first 200 customers also got an MOA gift card.

Check out the videos embedded above and below to see how people are preparing for the holidays and visit this link to learn how you can help kids this holiday season.

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INITIAL REPORT: Shoppers started lining up outside the Mall of America Thursday evening – some as many as 12 hours ahead of the Black Friday opening time – to take advantage of yearly sales and get a special bonus from the mall.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS reporter Kelsey Christensen spoke with a group of friends who got in line at 7 p.m. on Thanksgiving to get the gift cards the mall is giving to the first 200 shoppers. The first 4,000 people are also expected to get scratch-offs.

“To stay warm, we’ve got plenty of layers, and to entertain ourselves, we’ve just got each other,
one bundled-up shopper told Christensen around 5:30 a.m. Friday. “We’ve been playing cards, talking, going through old pictures, trying to pass the time.”

The group, who does this together every year, said it’s just as much about spending time with friends as it is about shopping.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) is expecting a record number of shoppers this Black Friday as people hit by inflation search for less expensive gifts.

NRF has predicted 166 million people – 8 million more than in 2021 – will go shopping this weekend, and retailers are hoping for a boom in sales.

Many companies are in a better place this year after being plagued by the constant supply chain shortages that began during the pandemic. Now, they have more stock and can offer more deals.

The largest discounts are expected on clothes, toys and electronics.

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