It was an early morning mad dash for many area residents in an effort to find the perfect present this morning.
"I've been awake all night," smiled a shivering woman outside Wal-Mart. "Wanted to make sure I got everyone down on my list."
At 5:30 a.m. the Wal-Mart parking lot was packed with cars, half of which had people waiting for the doors to open, the other half wrestling for a position in line. The line went all the way to Pell's when Wal-Mart opened.
"Hot chocolate!" was the chant of several shivering shoppers after standing in line for almost an hour.
At CVS the crowd was more subdued as they waited in cars for the 6 a.m. opening of the store.
"We do this every year," said two women sipping on coffee. "We make a whole day of it, and never know where we will end up at the end of the day." They refused to be identified because their husbands didn't know they were shopping. Other shoppers refused to be identified for various reasons.
At McDonald's and Hardees, the drive through lines were filled with people on the way to shop out of town. Toys R Us and the malls in Terre Haute seemed to be the most popular shopping destinations for many, although a couple mentioned driving to Plainfield.
Area gas stations were busy as well.
"I'm not shopping," a man pumping gas laughed. "Those people are crazy at these early morning sales. I'm just driving her there," he motioned to his wife inside the car. "And pushing the cart. She can fight for the stuff."