Black Friday on the Mag Mile

November 25, 2011

(WBEZ/Jennifer Brandel)
A successful Michigan Avenue shopper looks for a cab to help haul her goodies.

Chicago's Magnificent Mile shopping strip is teeming with Black Friday shoppers Friday. But if Chicagoans were shopping downtown, they were certainly hard to find.

The majority of people polled were from not just out of state, but from overseas - here to take advantage of a recession and good deals. Ben Schamisso from Belgium said he's impressed by the folks camping out in front of shops late last night.

"We have people being crazy over shopping in Europe too, but I do think people are a little crazier here," Schamisso said.

Shoppers may have been lining up at the wee hours of the morning, but everyone we talked to said they're only buying what they can afford this year and paying for it immediately, like Alison Stambaugh.

"I'm not doing the credit thing this year. I'm not gonna get in the hole again," Stambaugh said.

For Anne-Marie Poltorak, the economy has provided a new perspective on the Black Friday craze.

"As we're getting older and our kids are getting older, it's more of an experience of family and not so much things. We don't exchange as much," Poltorak said.

It's estimated 152,000,000 people will be holiday shopping around the country into the weekend.