Thousands swarm Great Mall in Milpitas for 27-hour shopping event

MILPITAS, Calif. (KGO) -- Local shoppers skipped the turkey Thursday and went straight for the sales.

Crowds of bargain hunters hoped to snag door-buster deals and fought for parking, packed malls and stood in lines for hours Thursday night, the official start of holiday shopping season.

Black Friday shopping has already started in Milpitas where the Great Mall opened six hours early. The mall will stay open for 27 hours straight.

At 6 p.m., thousands streamed into the Great Mall in Milpitas.

VIDEO: Bay Area shoppers eager for Thanksgiving Day deals

"I've been here for maybe four or five hours," said one shopper.

Getting into the mall was a challenge. Getting into the stores was another challenge.

"I thought about it when I got in the line it was like,wait, we are in line to go to another line," Patrick Mata said.

But the discounts, as high as 70 percent off, are worth it for Victoria Flores.

"I usually save maybe $300 to $600 total," Flores said. "It's definitely worth it. I do it every year."

Jason Pham who battled peer pressure and hordes of traffic feels like a victim of a market-driven society with stores opening earlier for Black Friday.

"I think back then it used to be 12 midnight when we came out," Pham said. "But now it's like in the middle of the day. It's not even dark yet."

"All families have different traditions. Different ways of celebrating Thanksgiving, and some of that is coming shopping," said Lynne Rice, Marketing director of Great Mall.

The Great Mall says customer demand is what convinced them do this for the second year in a row.

To check out out our Black Friday and Cyber Monday guide to map out your shopping quest, click here.
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