Black Friday shoppers camped out for days before Thanksgiving -, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Black Friday shoppers camped out for days before Thanksgiving

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Thursday, many national retailers, including Macy's, Walmart and Best Buy, are opening their doors even earlier than they did last year.

Some people, including Andy Martin, have been camping outside of the Best Buy in Longview for five days. They're braving both the cold and the boredom.

"We've been out here since Saturday morning. We just brought a ton of blankets and chairs... books to read," says Martin.

There is no doubt that people have strong opinions when it comes to forgoing a Thanksgiving with friends and family to snag a few deals, but the Black Friday campers in Longview say they're actually getting the best of both worlds.

"[My family] is supportive. They come out here. They're actually our team. You're supposed to have a team that helps you out during the whole process," explains Danny Chavez.

"I don't come out here just to get sales. I come out here to hang out with my friends. I don't get to see them all year long," adds Martin.

However, Black Friday has been changing. More stores opening earlier and earlier makes some of the shoppers uneasy.

"I wish they would just keep them the same. It's not Black Friday if it's on Thursday," says Martin.

"This year, they changed it up and we're just not sure if it's the best place anymore. They're trying to keep up with the competition and I don't think it's going to work out as well as they think they have it planned out," says Chavez about Best Buy's plans to open from 6-10 p.m. then again at midnight.

While the concrete is cold and the amenities are less than desirable, this annual camping trip has become a tradition where strangers become friends and meet back at the Best Buy parking lot year after year.

"If it all goes well, we might keep the same traditions. There's only so much you can buy and we've already got a lot of stuff from 4 years prior," says Chavez.

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