By Nick Giovanni

BRAINTREE (CBS) – Reports of Black Friday’s demise were greatly exaggerated, at least based on the traffic at the South Shore Plaza early Friday morning.

“Twelve o’clock when the doors opened it was a madhouse,” one shopper told WBZ-TV.

A steady stream of shoppers assembled long before midnight to pull the all-nighter.

“As a family, we’ve been doing it over 30 years,” said a member of the self-described “Bella’s Elite Shopping Team.”

shop2 Black Friday Shoppers Up Early For Best Deals

Bella’s Elite Shopping Team back at the South Shore Plaza for Black Friday 2017. (WBZ-TV)

Some were up early on the hunt for the best deals by the cartload.

“This year, I got everything really cheap, really good and available, that was the big thing,” another team member told WBZ.

“I got a couple of shirts, and there were a lot of places that had 50 percent off which is good,” said one woman.

Others were just maintaining an annual tradition.

shop3 Black Friday Shoppers Up Early For Best Deals

(WBZ-TV)

“You just do it. It’s like something you have to do the day after Thanksgiving,” said one man.

“Why not? What am I doing at home, you know what I mean?” another shopper explained.

shopping1 Black Friday Shoppers Up Early For Best Deals

Black Friday shoppers at the South Shore Plaza in Braintree. (WBZ-TV)

No matter the motive, the takeaway from the turnout was Black Friday is still a force to be reckoned with.

“Everybody’s been saying that the malls are dead,” a man told WBZ. “We had a very robust crowd.”

And if you decide to head out to any mall, Framingham police had this advice for drivers.

Dana Katz with Milton’s Store for Men said, “We’ve really expanded our Black Friday specials and our appeal and our outreach to customers.”

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