Weather Forecast


Black Friday die-hards find camaraderie, goodwill

Brothers Will, left, and Bobby Gordon cook up burgers Thursday while waiting for Best Buy to open at midnight. Bulletin photo by Mike Longaecker1 / 3
Shoppers-in-waiting passed the time in various ways Thursday, including a game of Scrabble. Bulletin photo by MIke Longaecker2 / 3
Cottage Grove resident Mark Scherr was first in line at Best Buy for Black Friday deals. He arrived Tuesday night. Bulletin photo by Mike Longaecker3 / 3

Cody Becker drove up to the Woodbury-area Best Buy on Wednesday from Hastings expecting to land unbeatable deals on electronics.

He didn't expect to make a few friends along the way. Becker, along with Cottage Grove resident Mark Scherr and St. Paul man Andrew Summy, were first in line at the Oakdale Best Buy. The three were strangers, but said they had reached buddy status by Thanksgiving Day.

So maybe it's not all about the deals, Becker said.

"It's about the camaraderie," he said. "Where else can you go and walk into a group of strange guys and become best friends?"

Shoppers around Woodbury were out in force for "Black Friday" deals. At Woodbury's Super Target, the first die-hard deal-getter was spotted setting up camp at about 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Scherr had that person beat.

He's been at Best Buy since 5 p.m. Tuesday with his sights set on a 40-inch TV for his aunt - the same deal Becker was after. He's also getting himself a $40 car stereo and a $190 laptop for his dad.

Along the way, he's been treated to a few favors for his efforts. He said a man driving a truck pulled up Wednesday asking the early shoppers if they wanted something to eat. Before Scherr knew it, the truck was back with a delivery of bacon cheeseburgers from nearby Five Guys Burgers.

Appropriately, a turkey delivery was expected for Thursday afternoon.

"There's been a lot of good going around," Scherr said, adding that the Best Buy manager bought pizzas Wednesday night for the camped-out shoppers.

Among the approximately 15 shoppers lined up at 1 p.m. Thursday outside Best Buy were brothers Bobby and Will Gordon. The Woodbury residents had burgers cooking on the grill while they waited for the stroke of 12 a.m. when they planned to head for the 40-inch TVs for $180.

So what are the essentials for a concrete camp-out for Black Friday? Scherr and his companions offered the following list:

-- Warm clothes

-- Toe warmers

-- Hand warmers

-- Snacks

-- Liquids

-- Shelter

-- Portable heater

-- Thermos

-- Coffee, and lots of it

-- Cellphone

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

(715) 426-1072