(NECN: Williston, VT) - Large crowds will be forming tonight outside many stores around New England, as shoppers line up for the best deals on Black Friday.
This holiday shopping season is expected to be a little more fruitful for retailers than the last two.
Thanksgiving day .. Karen and Linda Osborn emerged from Walmart in Williston, Vermont, with a cart full of items... and a sense of what they'd fill their cart with the next day.
This was the calm before the Black Friday storm.
When consumers kick off their holiday shopping season with a vengeance.
Compared to the past two years, 2010 is showing some promise for retailers, according to the Vermont Retailers Association. Consumers seem to be expressing a little more interest in discretionary and luxury items.
Tasha Wallis says the prediction nationally is for 2.3-percent growth over last year... perhaps even higher in New England.
Although consumer confidence seems to be up, some shoppers say their spending habits have been altered by the recession.
A planner, Julie Slattery put the finishing touches on her Christmas shopping Thursday, before many others had even begun theirs.
She's opting out of the black friday craze-- thankful to spend that time instead with her family.