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HIXSON, Tennessee(WDEF) – The Christmas shopping season is supposed to start on Black Friday but in reality, most people started hitting the stores Thursday evening.

The time was 2:30 in the morning and WDEF caught up with Deanna Dean of Chattanooga. Dean was Christmas shopping at inside the Khol’s department store in Hixson. Khol’s was one of several stores she shopped at since 6:30 Thursday evening.

"Walmart was crazy. The malls were packed. But now at this time, there’s not a lot of people out. So it’s nice to just check out what everybody has," Dean said.

But Dean wasn’t the only person on an hourly shopping roll.

"We been going since 5 O’clock yesterday. What has it been like? Crazy," said Ryan Shipley.

"We went to Walmart about 6:30 so I have no idea what time it is," said Kelly Rios who was pushing two shopping carts filled with gifts.

Black Friday is all about the big sales. So where there’s a good sale, people will wait in long lines while braving cold temperatures to get a good deal.

That was the case at the Academy sports store next to Khole’s. The store officially opened at 5 AM Friday but there was already a long line to get in by 4:30.

With so many stores offering deals, Dean and several other shoppers WDEF talked to were able to find items at prices that didn’t break the bank.

"I found a lot of things for my kids. Everything seems to be on sale that they like so its been a very successful shopping trip," Dean said.

"We found our best deals at Khol’s. Walmart and Toy’s R Us didn’t have a lot going on," said Shaunda Lynch.

"In Khol’s, we purchased three items and saved $51," said Shipley.

When some stores were just beginning to open their doors for Black Friday shopping, every Khol’s employee was nearing a 12-hour shift; a shift required a lot of standing, smiling and customer service.

"We are at our best in customer service when we’re this busy. We are like a well oiled machine when we’re this busy. This is when we outshine the rest," said Khol’s Customer Service Supervisor Judi Durbin.

As for Dean; she says she is keeping her shopping plans very simple.

"knocking it out in one day and I’m done," Dean said.

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