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Rochester Hills Friends Camp Out At Best Buy For Black Friday Deals — And ‘The Fun Of Being There’

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Zachary Davis camps outside the Best Buy store for Thanksgiving Day deals. (WWJ/Sandra McNeill)

Zachary Davis camps outside the Best Buy store for Thanksgiving Day deals. (WWJ/Sandra McNeill)

sandramcneill Sandra McNeill
A native Detroiter and University of Michigan graduate, I got a break...
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ROCHESTER HILLS (WWJ) – There are cold nights ahead for 21-year-old Zachary Davis of Rochester Hills. He’s been camped outside the local Best Buy since 2 a.m. Saturday —  six days ahead of what’s traditionally known as the biggest shopping day of the year.

Davis is waiting for the Thanksgiving Day deals — hoping to snag up discounts on TVs, GPS units, games and movies.

Davis has loaded up his tent to keep off the chill.

“Blankets, air mattress, sleeping bag — got my iPad in there for reading and all that,” he said.

Davis says it’s not just the deals that inspire him to camp out in the retail cold.

Davis expects to save about $1,200 on the sales, but mostly he and his four friends who are also camping out in shifts, are doing it for kicks.

Meanwhile, the local temperature has been dipping down to the 20s at night, with periodic light snow.

“A lot of people think it’s the deals but it’s just as much the fun of being here with my friends … they aren’t here right now, but we take shifts for work and school … so it just happens to be me right now, but they’ll be here,” he said.

Although his tent doesn’t have heat, he’s making the best of it, saying a heater may be on the way when his friends turn up again.

But in the meantime, “I’m cold, oh yeah.”

How does Best Buy feel about fans spending the week tenting it outside?

“We do not have them go away (if it gets too cold),” said Pierre Bickham, a Rochester hills store manager. “It’s up to them as to whether they want to stay there for the weekend … We’ll let them use the restroom and such.”

Propane heaters are not allowed as a rule, he said, and some are even managing to set up tents at night and leaving to go to work during the day — then returning to the tent to sleep. 

“There’s no ordinance, no one is telling them not to do it from a city ordinance standpoint,” Bickham said.

BLACK FRIDAY SHOPPING 

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