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Everything you need to know to survive Black Friday

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Posted: Wednesday, November 21, 2007 10:00 pm

Black Friday: The biggest shopping day of the year. Here's a rundown of local store hours and featured items.

Target

Store hours:

• Friday: 6 a.m. - 11 p.m.

• Saturday: 8 a.m. - 11 p.m.

• Sunday: 8 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Hot items:

• 19-inch Trutech widescreen LCD HDTV with built-in DVD player for $199 (regularly $329).

• 37-inch Olevia widescreen LCD HDTV for $549 (regularly $799.99).

• Kodak eight-megapixel, slim digital camera for $89 (regularly 149.99).

Lowe's

Store hours:

• Friday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Saturday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Sunday: 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.

Hot items:

• 20 percent off Whirlpool washer and dryer pair.

• Black and Decker cordless, 18-volt, four-piece combo kit with charger, hand vacuum, flashlight and drill for $39.97 (regularly $119).

• BBQ grillware barbecue grill with 335-square-inch cooking area and side burner for $88.

• Prices valid Friday only.

Longs

Store hours:

• Friday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Saturday: 7 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Sunday: 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. (Lodi Avenue location), 8 a.m. - 10 p.m. (Kettleman Lane location).

Hot items:

• 1-gigabyte Del Star MP4 player for $19.99 after mail-in rebate.

• Vivitar five-megapixel digital camera for $39.99 after mail-in rebate.

• Spectron IQ portable 7-inch portable DVD player for $79.99 after mail-in rebate.

• Prices valid Friday and Saturday only.

Mervyns

Store hours:

• Friday: 4 a.m. - 11 p.m.

• Saturday: 6 a.m. - 11 p.m.

• Sunday: 9 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Hot items:

• 1-gigabyte Sharper Image video MP3 player for $49.99 (regularly $119.99).

• 9-inch Spectron IQ portable DVD player for $99.99 after mail-in rebate (regularly $249.99).

• Your choice of one of several diamond bracelets or pendants for $59.99 (regularly $350 to $400).

• Prices valid Friday morning only.

Wal-Mart

Store hours:

• Friday: Opens at 5 a.m. and doesn't close again until Christmas Eve.

• Saturday: Open 24 hours

• Sunday: Open 24 hours

Hot items:

• Compaq Presario Desktop Computer Bundle with 120 gigabyte hard drive for $398.

• Polaroid 32-inch LCD HDTV for $448.

• Sony Cybershot camera with 2-inch LCD screen for $79.87.

• Prices only valid Friday from 5 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Big KMart

Store hours:

• Friday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Saturday: 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.

• Sunday: 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.

Hot items:

• Sylvania 20-inch LCD television for $197 (regularly $299.99).

• Buy a Nintendo DS Lite or a handheld PSP and get a $25 gift card.

• Nextar navigation system with 3.5-inch touch screen.

• Prices only valid Friday from 5 a.m. to 11 a.m.

J.C. Penney

Store hours:

• Friday: 4 a.m. - 11 p.m.

• Saturday: 8 a.m. - 9 p.m.

• Sunday: 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Hot items:

• 7.5-foot, pre-lit, artificial Christmas tree for $108.88 (regularly $339.99).

• Diamond rings, pendants and earrings for $99.99 each.

• Prices only valid Friday from 4 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Staples

Store hours:

• Friday: 6 a.m. - 9 p.m.

• Saturday: 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

• Sunday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Hot items:

• Compaq Presario notebook with 80 gigabyte hard drive for $349.98 (regularly $749.98).

• 32-inch flat-panel LCD HDTV for $449.98 (regularly $899.98).

• Acer 17-inch wide-screen LCD monitor for $89.98 (after mail-in rebate).

Weather Guide

Black Friday shoppers should enjoy lots of sunshine, says Bob Klug, a meteorologist for AccuWeather.com, a private forecasting firm.

Deal hunters should expect a high of 63 degrees and a low of 32 degrees Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year.

"It might be a little chilly," Klug said, but shoppers should be able to bear the early morning cold in the parking lots of their favorite stores.

For Saturday, Klug predicted a high of 61 degrees and a low of 34 degrees.

Sunday will most likely follow suit, Klug said, with lots of sunshine and temperatures ranging from the high 30s to the mid 60s.

"Looks pretty good out there," Klug said.

Online Shopping Guide

Too stuffed to spend the night in a big-box parking lot waiting for the best deals? Well, you don't have to.

Several online stores are offering Black Friday deals that you can access without having to suffer through the crowds.

Amazon.com is offering Friday-only deals on everything from cookware to jewelry to tools. The products that are to be sold on the day after Thanksgiving are not yet visible on the company's Web site, but shoppers should check back Friday morning.

Many retail stores are also offering Black Friday deals on their online stores.

Circuit City, for example, is offering Web-only deals and financing on cameras, LCD televisions and laptops on its Web site.

Apple, a company that offers very few sales, is also holding a day-after-Thanksgiving event. The online store advises customers to come back to the Web site on Friday, but said the store will be offering free shipping.

However, not all retail stores are offering Web deals. Finding the stores that do offer sales might take a bit more finger work, but could pay off in hundreds of dollars.

To help shoppers out, several people have compiled the deals in a single Web site, making it easier to get the goods you need faster.

Helpful Web sites include http://www.blackfriday.info, http://www.bfads.net and http://www.blackfriday.gottadeal.com.

Line-waiting tips and tricks

• Dress in warm clothing and bring blankets. If you think you're cold in the morning when you're off to work and school, remember that's when you're moving.

You'll be even colder when you're sitting on the concrete for hours in front of your favorite store.

Plan for it to be colder than you expect and bring extra layers and blankets. Remember, you can always take layers off, but you'll lose your place in line if you leave to get them later.

• Arrive early, really early. In this case not only does the early bird get the worm, he also gets the eight-megapixel digital camera and the half-off LCD television.

In short, those who get there first will get the best deals.

Expect people to start lining up for doorbusters Thursday night.

• Bring a friend. Not only will a friend help keep you safe in the wee hours of the morning, but they will also hold your place in line while you run to the bathroom and make that unexpected snack run.

• Bring mindless entertainment. Conversation can get sparse at 3 a.m., so it's best to bring a trashy novel, your handheld video game system or a deck of cards to pass the time until the stores open their doors.

• Know exactly what you want and where it is in the store. Don't come to the store hoping to randomly pick up a few great deals.

More than likely, somebody else will snag those goods while you're left wondering what to buy.

Also, once you get in, ask a store clerk to point you to exactly where the item you want is in the store. This way you won't be wandering aimlessly among the crowds while somebody else is heading to the register with your deal.

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