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The time is upon us. It's not just that time of year to dive into your mile-high plate of turkey and dressing.

It's also time to sort through the circulars, stand in lines and grapple for the best deals the season has to offer.

Before you wander into the madness, here's some tips.

Four of the largest retailers in the country and here in Central Georgia all open on Thanksgiving Day.

Toys R Us swings open the earliest at 5 p.m. Walmart and Best Buy welcome customers at 6 p.m. Macy's will hold off shoppers until 8 p.m.

At our sister station in Cleveland WKYC consumer reporter Matt Granite started sorting through Christmas season bargains in July.

He mapped out where to find the bargains in big stores.

For example at Best Buy, instead of going to the right when you come in, do the opposite of what most folks do and go left. You'll find 20 to 30-percent off appliances, discounts on gaming bundles and $55 blu-ray players.

At Target, electronics are split into two different sections. On the far left side of the store, there's a one cent smart phone deal. Toward the middle left, 50-percent off some point-and-shoot cameras.

At Walmart, they will have a sale on about 200 different home items, typically located toward the middle of the store. In the back, you can find blu-ray discs for $3.96 each.

Store Maps: Maps of deals on Black Friday

Stock lists: Stock and prices at major retailers

Best Deals: Top 50 deals so far

Reviewed.com, a site owned by 13WMAZ's parent company Gannett, found some so-called "deals" not worth your time or money.

Best Buy is promoting a $299 Apple iPad 2. That's $100 off the regular price, but ancient technology they say.

Walmart has a 32-inch TV for $98. They called that deal "questionable at best."

Macy's is advertising a Keurig K45 coffee maker for just under $100. That's $75 off the regular price. Reviewed.com says its not worth the hassle, because you can order it on Amazon.com for only $30 more, and get a 28-count variety pack of K-cups, plus two glass mugs with it.

There's 26 shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. That's a shorter shopping season than normal.

Because of that, many retailers have designed more aggressive marketing strategies trying to grab customers. Those discounts could potentially benefit savvy shoppers.

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