Another tradition has bit the dust.
Detroit-area shoppers will no longer have to wait in long lines at pre-dawn times to find the best deals on Black Friday. That’s because there is no Black Friday anymore. It has been replaced by Black Thursday, errr, Black Thanksgiving.
Retailers, anxious to get a leg up on the Christmas buying season – and acutely aware that the 2013 season is a little shorter than usual, thanks to a late Thanksgiving – are abandoning the wee hour openings on the day after Thanksgiving and moving the times up to Thanksgiving evening. So instead of preparing for an early rise with lots of coffee, warm clothing, and comfortable shoes, shoppers will now have the option of getting off the couch or cutting short a stroll to sleep off or burn off their Thanksgiving dinners; and head to the local big box retailer to fight with other shoppers for early bird specials.
Some examples of Thursday, 8:00 openings include Walmart, JC Penney, Kohl’s and Macys. Close behind are Toys R Us and Target (unofficial) at 9:00 p.m. Michigan megastore Meijer has not announced any changes to last year’s 4:00 a.m. opening – yet.
There are still other stores that are giving employees a break and allowing them to get some sleep on Black Friday eve. But the numbers are dwindling. Thanksgiving family traditions are being pushed away to honor the insatiable holiday shopping thirst of today’s consumers.
I’ll give these retailers credit for something, though. At least they are keeping the brick-and-mortar retail frontier alive. You can’t experience the big savings – or the crush of humanity – at their online stores. The true shopping experience must be witnessed up close and personal.
Okay, so here is the part I am sure most readers are waiting for: my Black Friday experiences in the wee hours of the morning. I only have three:
• Candyland board game at Toys R Us
• Portable DVD player at Kohls
• Xbox at Best Buy
That’s it, the rest of my shopping is via gift cards or online purchases. But a part of me still wants to experience that early morning crush just one more time. Sadly, that option is dwindling. Happy Black Thanksgiving everyone.
Got a Black Friday shopping experience? Please share it with me at email@example.com. I’ll post some goodies later on.