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Black Friday Shoppers Arrive Early At Shopping Centers, Local Retailers

BLOOMINGTON, Minnesota (WCCO) -- With Thanksgiving leftovers still in the fridge, the National Retail Federation says more than 100 million Americans are expected to do some shopping on Black Friday, some online but others in stores.

WCCO's Marielle Mohs was at the Mall of America in Bloomington Friday morning as hundreds lined up overnight in order to get in early. There was a dash for the doors at 7 a.m. sharp.

The first 200 people there received gift cards, and everyone got mystery scratch off tickets to win free gifts.

There were shoppers who came from not just the metro area but also out of state, including Chicago and Wisconsin, to experience Mall of America on Black Friday.

Those seeking to spend money may require some extra time and patience to find what they want this year. Many in-demand products have become exceedingly hard to find. Shipping delays at ports and a nationwide trucker shortage have left many stores struggling to keep shelves stocked.

Toys are among the gifts that could be hard to come by. Experts say shoppers in the market for a specific present should buy it now if they can, instead of waiting for a better price.

In addition to product shortages, shoppers will have to contend with inflation and higher prices. One estimate says the cost of many items has risen anywhere from 5% to 17% from a year ago.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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