"I wanted to make sure I would be able to get one of the laptops they have for $170," she said.
"I'm No. 1 in line, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I'll get one of them. I've never done this to be No. 1 in line, but I love Black Friday. I always have, and this is the first time they're open on Thanksgiving."
For the first time, malls and shopping centers throughout the city pushed the envelope by opening early yesterday for bargain hunters who once waited for today's Black Friday bonanza.
Thus, the city that was once famous for the most restrictive Sunday "blue laws" anywhere joined the rest of the nation in making turkey day the launching pad for the Christmas shopping season.
Francis Rinault of Brewerytown was bundled from head to toe in cold-weather gear to brave the cold. He was waiting in line outside Best Buy for a 55-inch LG TV.
"I swore when I was young that I'd never stand in line on Black Friday," he said.
"I think this is all crazy, but I said, 'You know what? I'll take a chance.' "
By noon yesterday, Wal-Mart on Delaware Avenue had set up rows of metal barriers that would herd many of the first shoppers in their doors, which opened at 8 p.m. Old Navy opened at 9 a.m., closed from 4 to 7 p.m. and then stayed open through midnight into Black Friday, with 50 percent off the entire store.
"Everyone wants outerwear - hats, gloves, vests, coats - denim is a big seller in here and also our basic knits. I would call this a nice, busy day. Its not as slow as we thought it was going to be," said merchandise specialist Nickki Petaccio.
Across town, in keeping with a long-standing tradition, Ralph Berarducci, owner of the Walnut Street Supper Club in Center City, opened his doors at 1 p.m. to offer a free Thanksgiving dinner to those who weren't expecting one. For nearly two decades, Berarducci has served anywhere from 500 to 1,000 people on Thanksgiving Day and not asked for a nickel.
While most posh stores along Walnut Street were closed for the holiday, Berarducci was happy to feed weary shoppers, or anyone who passed by with a hungry belly.
"You believe to get up in the morning and make a difference," he said.
"I've been doing this for a lot of years. A lot of people, they know my name. And they come back year after year like a repeat customer. This is a special day to make a difference and do something for others. There are many ways to thank the Lord, and this is one way. I dedicate this day to him."
On Twitter: @RuffTuffDH