Downtown merchants say they usually get off to a slower start than outlying districts. It's somewhat of the calm before the storm.
Charlotte Hungate, a downtown merchant, says, "We just start kind of slow but it ends up with a bang. We're expecting people to shop, we're very optimistic about the economy."
Karen Wilkes is getting started on her Christmas shopping. She intentionally got out early to dodge the crowd.
Wilkes says, "It's comfortable, it's not overwhelming. You came downtown and it's more of a personal touch. It's not the hassle, the rushed feeling."
Terry Miller, a downtown shopper, says, "It's been nice. It's not been empty but you have no lines, that's great."
For some shoppers some bargains came in unusual packages.
Miller also said, "I got this ugly turkey. Kevin's gave it to me, so I'm going to try and find something to do with it. I'm not sure what, but the price was right."
By noon it looked a lot more like one of the busiest shopping days of the year, and now let the countdown to Christmas begin!