Saginaw Black Friday pile-up goes viral

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by JIM DOUGLAS

WFAA

Posted on November 29, 2013 at 10:24 PM

SAGINAW -- Cell phone video from a Walmart in Saginaw is drawing national, and likely, international interest.

The twittersphere is as hungry for Black Friday fight video as shoppers are for bargains. Just search for the hashtag WalmartFights.

The rush in Saginaw Thursday was quickly dispersed by a large security detail of off-duty police standing by. Big retailers have learned from previous Black Friday shopper violence.

"Safer than last year, in fact,” said Walmart’s David Tovar in a video news release. “We did have a few minor incidents. They were resolved pretty quickly."

A man slightly injured in the Saginaw incident told News 8’s Teresa Woodard there was no physical fight. The customer, who didn’t want to be identified, said he ended up on the bottom of a pile when shoppers pushed forward for headphones on sale.

Retailers are brawling with each other to get customers, rolling out deep discounts earlier than ever on Thursday.

“We had a record-breaking night last night at Walmart,” David Tovar said. “Last year, we served 22 million customers on Thanksgiving. Last night, we beat that number.”

But there's also pushback to consumer frenzy creeping ever deeper into the holiday. We found plenty of it In the Fort Worth stockyards.

"I'm an anti-Black Friday shopper. Doing the family thing so far," said Jamie Basilicata as she climbed down from a photo op on the back of a longhorn.

Another family, with members in town from four states, eagerly jumped on the topic.

"Thanksgiving used to be my favorite holiday,” said Carolyn Torain Hunt of North Carolina. “People and family got together. All of it was about love. Now it's about money. That's not Thanksgiving. We're thankful for having each other."

That said, they were hitting the boutiques on Exchange Street –- buying holiday gifts with western flare.

E-mail jdouglas@wfaa.com

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