Customers stampeding for sales and scrambling to get that last discounted smart television, endless lines that wind into parking lots headed by shoppers who’ve been camped out for hours — and all before the sun is even up.
After years of Black Friday madness encroaching further and further on Thanksgiving Day family time, several chain stores are refusing to open their doors until well after Thanksgiving dinner is finished – and some are opening only several hours earlier than usual on Friday November 27.
It is a risky statement for businesses that have come to depend on Black Friday as the nation’s single largest shopping day of the year, but one that is bringing some much-needed relief to the retail workers’ busy holiday season.
The term Black Friday came about in the 1950s, when Philadelphia cops coined the phrase to refer to the post-Thanksgiving shopping chaos that took over their city. With a popular football game scheduled for the Saturday after Thanksgiving each year, officers would have little time off and have to work extra shifts to accommodate the crowds and the traffic. They named the chaotic day “Black Friday.”
Today, many retail workers feel the same way as those Philadelphia police officers in the 1950s.
The “day” has extended into a Black Friday weekend, with many chain stores offering promotions from Thanksgiving Day until Sunday and more and more often workers expected to forgo their holiday meals to tend to the enormous crowds.
Each year, stores have begun opening their doors incrementally earlier on Thanksgiving. Walmart, the mass retail giant, will be open all day Thursday and Friday with sales beginning at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving, a practice which they’ve defended as “absolutely appropriate” and purely driven by competition. Walmart, which is the world’s largest company by revenue, has done this for the past three years. Its competitors, such as Target, have joined them to try and keep up with online sales and extended hours.
This year, an estimated 135.8 million shoppers plan to take advantage of the Black Friday weekend sales, according to a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation. Many stores embrace the trend of “the earlier the better” for opening hours to accommodate these shoppers.
But there is another trend taking over the retail scene this year: several national stores are opting to keep their doors closed on Thanksgiving.
The pushback comes from retail workers and shoppers alike. A petition on MoveOn.org for Walmart to “give Thanksgiving back to workers” has more than 35,000 signatures. One local resident even decided to have a food drive to combat the commercialism of her favorite holiday.
Here’s a list of stores and local retailers that will remain through Thanksgiving night:
- Bed Bath and Beyond, opens Friday at 6 a.m.
- BJs, opens Friday at 7 a.m.
- Costco, opens Friday at 9 a.m.
- DSW, opens Friday at 7 a.m.
- Home Depot, opens Friday at 6 a.m.
- Home Goods, opens Friday at 7 a.m.
- Lowe’s, opens Friday at 5 a.m.
- P.C. Richard and Sons, opens Friday at 6 a.m.
- Pier One, opens Friday at 8 a.m.
- Petco, opens Friday at 7 a.m.
- Radio Shack, opens Friday at 8 a.m.
- Staples, opens Friday at 6 a.m.
- TJ Maxx, opens Friday at 7 a.m.
If you know any other stores that belong on this list, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
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