Crowds at many Triangle stores thinned out this morning after early-bird shoppers picked clean many of the best deals.
By 8 a.m. visitors to Triangle Town Center in North Raleigh had little trouble finding a parking space.
"This is a normal mall day," said Lindsey Cooke, 25, who was in town visiting her sister from Virginia Beach.
Retailers moved up Black Friday's starting day this year, with some stores opening on Thanksgiving Day.
Some of the longest lines were at Toys R Us, which opened at 9 p.m. Thursday, and Best Buy, which opened at midnight along with Macy's, Kohl's and Target.
Several veteran Black Friday shoppers said the different opening times made the event less hectic and allowed them to get to more stores.
"I like how it's staggered," said Monique Williams, 28, of Franklinton, as she waited to be among first in the door at Toys R Us in Crossroads Plaza in Cary.
Williams and her friend, Francine Judd, planned to hit Target, Kohls and Walmart before calling it a morning.
"We're planning to be home by 6 a.m. if all goes well," she said.
Keri and Roscoe Foltz said they preferred staying up late to hunt for deals as opposed to getting up early.
Most of those willing to wait hours in line to be first in the door were after big ticket items, such as televisions and video game consoles.
At Walmart, which stays open 24 hours, the sales started at 10 p.m. More sales kicked in at midnight and 8 a.m. this morning.
As soon as it hit 10 p.m. at the Walmart Supercenter on Kildaire Farm Road in Cary, shoppers began grabbing power tools, dolls and an assortment of other items.
Alex Cardinell, 30, of Raleigh, comes out every Black Friday with his wife to shop for Christmas presents for their three children and any other items the family needs.
Although Cardinell had a cart full of items, he said the deals weren't as good as they have been in past years.
"Or there aren't as many of them," he said.
Cardinell suspected that since retailers have been offering discounts for months to try and entice shoppers into their stores, they had less room for major discounts on Black Friday.
Michael Hamrick, 44, was participating in Black Friday for the first time this year as he walked the aisles of Walmart late Thursday night.
"I just wanted to see what all the rush was," he said.
Hamrick said he was disappointed with the discounts on many items, which he said didn't appear to be all that different from what he would pay on any other day.
"I don't see any real savings," he said.
Some retail workers have complained about retailers efforts to turn parts of Thanksgiving Day into a retailing holiday.
A few shoppers also shared that concern, even if they themselves were participating.
"This kind of ruins the holiday," said Cheryl Hairston, 50, who was waiting in line to get into Best Buy with her 21-year-old daughter Kiara. "It's not worth it. It takes away time from your family."