For many: ‘Black Friday’ or earlier shopping a tradition

Tyler Baumhoer, left, and Dakota Wolfe chat while camping outside Best Buy on Wednesday in preparation for the upcoming Black Friday sale. The two snagged head-of-the-line bragging rights after arriving to set up their campsite Tuesday, a full 56 hours before Best Buy’s sale began.

Tyler Baumhoer, left, and Dakota Wolfe chat while camping outside Best Buy on Wednesday in preparation for the upcoming Black Friday sale. The two snagged head-of-the-line bragging rights after arriving to set up their campsite Tuesday, a full 56 hours before Best Buy’s sale began. Photo by Kris Wilson.

Rhonda Cunningham and her daughter, Amber, were in the line outside Jefferson City's Kmart at 5:15 a.m. Thursday — 45 minutes before the store opened its doors for the first of three special holiday shopping events in a 24-hour period.

And they joined the line after driving in from Hallsville, northeast of Columbia and 45 miles away.

“We don’t have a Kmart in Columbia,” was Cunningham’s first explanation, as she left the store with a basket full of purchases, three hours after getting into that line.

Then, she added: “We just have to do it. It’s kind of a thing we do every year.”

Her family’s Thanksgiving celebration is Sunday, so Thursday is a day for what’s become a family shopping tradition.

“Actually, a whole weekend,” Cunningham said, “because we’ll start wrapping presents when we get back, and then go (shopping) again and wrap some more.”

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