During arguably the busiest shopping day of the year, local businesses large and small found success with Black Friday sales and are looking forward to a push through the weekend.
Several businesses this year implemented tiered schedules, offering shoppers specific sales at different times throughout the evening on Thanksgiving and into the morning on Black Friday.
"Yesterday was fantastic," Veto Moots, Elkins Kmart store manager, said Friday when asked about late-day Thanksgiving sales.
Amanda Salinas, left, ends her early shopping Black Friday with Micah Lehman, center, as they purchase a 46-inch LCD television from Elkins Kmart. Joan Yokum was the attending cashier, pictured right. (Inter-Mountain photos by Casey Houser)
Moots said he'd never seen a customer line as long as the one Kmart had when management reopened the store Thursday evening.
"Today (Black Friday) it started out slow," he continued, "but it's picking up."
Other stores in the area appeared to be having an afternoon rush, including the Elkins Walgreens.
"(Sales are) comparable to other years," said Ginny Ong, Walgreens store manager.
She said the amount of patrons was increasing throughout the day.
Small businesses were feeling the afternoon shopping wave, too.
Marlea Wheeler, owner of Marlea's clothing store, was surprised at the number of shoppers she saw Friday.
"I've been swamped today (Friday)," she said.
She also commented on Small Business Saturday, the American Express program that was created with the goal of promoting small businesses during the holidays.
Created in 2010, this is the third year that Small Business Saturday will take place, according to the American Express Website. Elkins OnTRAC participated in the event this year by distributing flyers to local small businesses.
"I'm sure it will be busy," said Wheeler.
She was hopeful that crowds would continue into today and throughout the weekend.
Shopping has become a sort of holiday tradition, Wheeler said. She partly attributes the high volume of customers to that developing tradition.