At CoolSprings Galleria mall, Black Friday morning is busy, not hectic

At CoolSprings Galleria mall, Black Friday morning is busy, not hectic


At 6 a.m. on Friday morning, the crowd at the CoolSprings Galleria mall looked much like it would on any other busy day during the holiday season.

‘Silver Bells’ played over the sound system, and giant holiday decorations hung from the ceiling.

Except it was Black Friday, and doors had just opened to shoppers, some of whom had waited in line since 4:30 a.m., said the mall’s Marketing Manager Kristina Francese.

Francese said the first 250 people in line at the Cheesecake Factory entrance received a $10 gift card to any of the mall’s retailers, and the first 100 also received a Vera Bradley reusable bag.

Until 3 p.m., the mall will have special giveaways, announced by a DJ, which include items like an American Girl doll, Build-A-Bear, a Pandora Jewelry set, and food court gift cards.

Shoppers filled out their information to be entered into a drawing for prizes/ Photo by Brooke Wanser.

“This year, we ramped it up a lot,” Francese said of the marketing for Black Friday. “We wanted to engage everyone, and we wanted to get the hype up.”

Though he declined an official interview, a security guard said it was slow at the mall that morning, much slower than another location he had been at before.

“There’s a lot of people here in the morning, but it definitely increases throughout the day,” Francese said.

A large portion of the mall’s holiday shoppers were teenage girls, who flocked into stores like Victoria’s Secret and Victoria’s Secret Pink, Sephora, and Pacsun.

A look inside the Victoria’s Secret Pink store/ Photo by Brooke Wanser.

Many middle-aged women also shopped, filling stores like Pandora Jewelry, Bath and Body Works and J.C. Penney.

Some groups even wore customized shirts; one group came from Lebanon, Tennessee, and another trio, from various towns around Gallatin.

Ayesha Rochester and her mother, Mary Asherbranner, said they had been coming to the CoolSprings Galleria mall for Black Friday since Rochester’s daughter, Jessica Holder, 22, was a baby.

This year, they donned custom-made t-shirts bearing each woman’s initials on the front. The back read, “I’m only a morning person on Black Friday.”

Just before 7 a.m., the three women had already shopped and put their purchases inside their truck. They sat inside the food court, eating breakfast from Chick-Fil-A.

Jessica Holder, Mary Asherbranner and Ayesha Rochester shop together each year on Black Friday/ Photo by Brooke Wanser.

Though Rochester said they sometimes shopped on Black Friday at the Murfreesboro mall, “We wanted to be inside this year,” she said.

At 7 a.m. inside Walmart, only a few shoppers pushed carts, some with toys and others with large-screen televisions. Signs handwritten in Sharpie markers adorned piles of bed frames, tool boxes, and electronics, alerting customers that these items were the last in stock.

Though a store manager from Walmart declined be interviewed for this story, he said things were “hectic and busy” last night when the store opened at 6 p.m.

Holder, Asherbranner and Rochester show off their custom t-shirts/ Photo by Brooke Wanser.

About The Author

Brooke Wanser is the associate editor for the Franklin Home Page, and can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @BWanser_writes or @FranklinHomepg.

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