Black Friday is the official start to the holiday shopping season, and it started earlier than ever — 8 p.m. at the Mall of America. A new report by the University of St. Thomas says this is the mall where most Minnesotans will do their holiday shopping. “We love the bonding experience, hanging out with each other,” said shopper Nicole Klinkhammer, who was at the mall Friday. There was a lot of buzz about starting Black Friday too early, but the Mall of America team says as long as people want to shop, they will be open. And it’s working out fine so far. They project a higher turn-out than last year, when the mall opened at midnight.