Love it or hate it, people shop for sales on Thanksgiving

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ASHWAUBENON, Wis. (WBAY) - Stores opening on Thanksgiving has been a controversy for years as more large retailers joined in, but we found no shortage of people in those stores Thursday.

For some diehard Black Friday fans, the extra day of shopping means fewer people in their way while they try to get the doorbusting deals.

"Last year or a couple years ago it was a really big mess. We were sitting in like boxes of paper and shoes, and it was honestly such a big mess, but we came this year early and it was like really easy to find everything and it was really clean," Maddy Berl said after shopping at Bay Park Square Mall in Ashwaubenon.

For others, shopping can fit around family time on Thanksgiving Day.

"I think it's great because actually we were able to get out of the house. We threw the turkey in the oven, come out and buy our stuff, and then have our turkey dinner this afternoon," John Fitzgerald said.

Or replace it.

"The wives were cooking and preparing the meal, and we looked up the Cabela's opening and closing times and found out they were open and kind of decided to sneak out of the house and go look at some tree stands and prep for Black Friday," Luke Behm said.

While many many people are against the idea of physically going into stores on Thanksgiving Day, sales online for this day have increased dramatically -- last year, an 11 percent increase from the year before, with people spending about $2 billion online on Thanksgiving Day.

Last month, a survey of hundreds of adults found more than 35 percent of people hate the idea of stores open Thanksgiving Day. But 26 percent said they really didn't care.

For retailers, the chaos is to be celebrated.

Cabela's is practically turning their store and parking lot into a block party.

"We'll have people lining up as early as 2 a.m. We will be outside at 2 a.m. We'll have raffles, prizes, we're giving away a couple guns, some firearms, and we'll also have a big screen TV set up outside so that it's not as boring as sitting in line," manager Logan Yewman said.