JOHNSON CITY, NY – After sitting down an enjoying a Thanksgiving Dinner with family and friends last night, many gathered again today to spend some time shopping.

The Oakdale Mall opened it’s doors at 8:00 AM this morning, and stores prepared to see more traffic this year than last.

General Manager of the Oakdale Mall, Courtney Rozen said seeing a line outside the mall this morning made it feel like we were getting back to normal again.

Also mentioning it’s great getting to see everyone gather and check out what deals each store has to offer.

“It’s so nice to see that people have been so good so far this year with being kind to each other and still practicing some of that social distancing. If you’re comfortable with or without a mask, it’s up to your preference this year,” she says.

Rozen also said that Santa arrives tomorrow, and if kids are comfortable, they can go back to sitting on Santa’s lap again.

She asked that reservations be made in advance though and that can be found on the malls Facebook page.

Raven Celtys has lived in Binghamton since 2005 and has worked every Black Friday since 2016 and she says making connections and going out to shop is so important now especially after a year of COVID.

“Or maybe you’ll go show up at a local show to see a band, or maybe you’ll go see that art piece on First Friday’s downtown or Small Business Saturdays, those little things matter,” said Celtys.

She said she loves seeing everyone come out and show and just interact again.

Rozen also mentioned that Holiday Entertainment is back this year starting next Friday and ending Christmas Eve.

She encourages the community to come out and listen to the local musicians and artists that will be performing.