SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. – It was a busy Black Friday at University Mall, where stores opened at 6 am.

Shoppers returned to in-person deals after last year broke records for online shopping. 58.7 million people shopped in-person on Black Friday in 2020, down 37 percent from the previous year.

“It’s actually really nice to see everything picking back up and people getting back out into the world and normal life is getting closer again,” said Sage Nielsen.

“I will tell you that this is my first time out on Black Friday ever because I’ve avoided it like the plague, but I’ve had a lot of fun today actually,” said Erik Filkhorn.

But the concerns that kept people home last year were still present, leaving some feeling a little nervous to be out in the crowd.

“It’s fun to see people again, I wish more were wearing masks, but that’s because I work at the health department,” Filkhorn said.

Store owners said business has also been boosted as of late thanks to the re-opening of the Canadian Border.

“We’re having a great season all of a sudden and today’s been great, much better than last year,” said Craig Hahn, owner of Go! Calendar and Games Kiosk. “Last year was a little iffy with everything that was going on but the shoppers came out today and they’re looking for those good deals.”