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Braving the Stores on Black Friday

The deals are out there to be had, but is it worth fighting the crowds?

Black Friday is less than two days away, and while I plan on going shopping that day, I'm not scouring the circulars or hunting down the best deals ahead of time.

It's a Thanksgiving tradition in my family to go shopping on Black Friday. But we're a part of the crack-of-10 a.m.-club, not the type to bang down the doors of the big box stores at 5 a.m. I heard some stores are opening at midnight this year, which sounds more like bedtime then shopping time to me.

Largely, our shopping tradition came about because I grew up in New Hampshire, where the nearest mall was an hour and a half away. So when we were in Boston to visit my aunt, uncle and cousins for Thanksgiving, the opportunity to shop at a mall (or even two!) was enticing to my mom.

She loves to browse at Crate & Barrel, go to various clothing stores and remark on the newly-hung Christmas decorations. We shop in the morning, call it a day in time for a pizza lunch at my relatives' house, then hit the road home.

Now, I live in the area and the malls are plentiful, but I still gladly keep up the tradition of shopping with my mom on Black Friday. And you know what? I've never felt like the stores are insanely crowded. Granted, we don't hit Best Buy or Target, but for the most part we're enjoying the coupons and sales among a tolerable number of other shoppers.

What about you? Tell us your Black Friday plans by voting in our poll, or by leaving a comment below.

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