12/26/07 — Shoppers seek bargains, returning presents on day after Christmas

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Shoppers seek bargains, returning presents on day after Christmas

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on December 26, 2007 2:13 PM

Shannon Bishop was ready for "one more" morning behind a shopping cart.

So, along with dozens of other Wayne County residents and her 10-year-old daughter, Liza, she showed up at the Rosewood-area Wal-Mart -- armed with a pocket full of money and a few gift cards.

"This is it," Mrs. Bishop, a Pikeville resident, said. "I don't think we are up for too much more. But at least it isn't as crowded as it was a few days ago."

Some were self-described "bargain shoppers."

Others, like Dudley resident Roger Higgins, just wanted to turn all that holiday cash into more gifts to add to their Christmas haul.

"A few more couldn't hurt," the 52-year-old said with a grin. "There were a few things I wanted and didn't get so I thought I'd come pick them up."

But all those who showed up at county stores this morning had one thing in common -- a desire to walk away with a few more gifts and goodies.

At a little past 7, the parking lot at Target was more than half full.

Inside the store, customers fanned out to spend rather than cash in. No one was waiting in line at customer service, where a clerk said she had only handled a couple returns.

Phyllis Sutton of Goldsboro was browsing with her granddaughter, 11-year-old Tayloe Rhue.

"We're just shopping for the sale items," Mrs. Sutton said. "We got gift cards. We can get more after Christmas than before."

The duo had already been to Belk when it opened at 6.

"We were going for one thing but it was all sold out," Taylor said.

They had also made a stop at McDonalds to eat breakfast before hitting the stores.

"In the rain," Mrs. Sutton noted, before adding, "but that's the best present we could have got."

Sharon Haney of Warsaw said she had one item to return, but it had been at another store. Once done, she made her way to Target, "just to see what I see. I'm just taking my time."

The biggest crowd was gathered in the Christmas section, where it was buggy-to-buggy traffic.

Kay Galloway of LaGrange had her carriage stocked with wrapping paper and an assortment of things for the next holiday season.

Marie Abrams and her daughter-in-law Morgan Abrams, both of Mount Olive, had two carts brimming with Christmas items.

"We were first in line," Marie said. "At 6:00, we were waiting in line, but were up close."

The women came with a strategy.

"Coffee first, first in line and grab a cart," Marie said.

"Last year, we didn't have a cart," Morgan explained.

"We were ready this year," her mother-in-law said.

Admittedly proud of their haul, the two paused to ponder how they would proceed.

"I don't know how we're going to get it to the car," Marie said.

"Or home," added Morgan.

"We may have to have a new strategy next year," Marie laughed.

Over in the children's section, Damesha Smith of Goldsboro pretty much had the place to herself.

She said she had a little girl to shop for, having already accomplished her earlier mission.

"I was looking for a leather coat at Penneys," she said.

And she found it.

But like many of the shopping stories that unfolded this morning, Ms. Smith's did not end there.

On to Target, she said.

Then, home.