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WATERLOO — Lines of people came to retail stores for Black Friday deals throughout the Cedar Valley.

Black Friday has evolved over time, with some stores opening the afternoon of Thanksgiving. Kohl’s opened at 5 p.m. Thursday and stayed open throughout the night, with many customers coming in around midnight.

Others stick with the classic formula and an early-morning Friday opening.

“We know it’s a great day for people to go out and get the specials, so we pull out about 150 extra pallets of merchandise,” said Stephen Carroll, Cedar Falls Menards general manager. “We spend all day Wednesday putting it all out, and now we’re here to sell it all.”

Menards had every register open to accommodate the increased patronage.

Pet beds were 50 percent off and were one of the biggest sellers during a six-hour “savings time” from 6 a.m. to noon Friday.

“We had 24 pallets of pet beds, and we’re probably down to half of them and it’s only been an hour,” Carroll said. “Usually, the lines will be heavy until 9 a.m. or 10 a.m., then they start dropping off. But we’ll stay steady up to 1 p.m. and slowly trickle down.”

Dee Coan was at Menards with her family taking advantage of the sale on dog beds. She had six in her cart.

“Between my daughter and I, we have six dogs,” Coan said. She also picked up some dog sweaters and other deals while at Menards.

The family made a morning of the trip, also hitting Walmart, Kohl’s, Sam’s Club, Scheels and ending their shopping safari by going out for breakfast.

Black Friday is a tradition for many, including Diana Hyde, who was at Kohl’s looking for deals on clothes.

“I’ve been doing it since I was nine with my aunts,” Hyde said.

She started at 4:30 a.m.

For Hyde, Black Friday is a chance to get her Christmas shopping over and done with.

“I like having Christmas (shopping) done the day after Thanksgiving,” Hyde said.

At Bed, Bath and Beyond, store manager Josh Arickx saw more people Friday morning than the last few years.

“There were people lined up before we even opened the door,” Arickx said.

Menards, Bed, Bath and Beyond and many others stores also have deals for the weekend and more in the weeks heading into Christmas.

“Black Friday’s a fun time. Obviously, it takes a lot of work to get it set up, but once you get it geared and you open the doors at six o’clock, it’s a good thing to watch these people come in and take advantage of all the specials,” Carroll said.

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Staff Writer

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