As those who have followed this holiday blog over the past two years may recall, I take a dim view of crass Christmas commercialism, and particularly the abject feeding frenzy known as “Black Friday” – that morning after Thanksgiving when millions rise in the pre-dawn darkness to stand in line outside retail outlets before engaging in a mad rush to “get the best for less.” And I do mean “mad rush.” This post Turkey-day buying hysteria has escalated beyond all rhyme and reason over the last couple of decades, and last year, as was probably inevitable, someone got trampled to death.
But this year, things will be different – or so Wal mart assures us. They’re moving the start of Black Friday to to Thanksgiving morning, and remaining open through Black Friday.
One is tempted to argue – since the hot deals will first become accessible on Thanksgiving proper (and in limited supply) – that this will just make for the same sort of maniacal rush as in previous years, but on Thanksgiving day, rather on Friday. Besides detracting from time spent with family at hearth and home.
Sound fun? Sure it does! Why relax and enjoy good food and drink with friends and family when you can stress out fighting the hordes of rabid deal-seekers at Wallyworld?
To read previous articles on the subject of Black Friday, follow the links after the snip, below.
November 11, 2009
Calming the Black Friday Crowds
By STEPHANIE ROSENBLOOM
A year after an unruly crowd trampled a worker to death at a Wal-Mart store, the nation’s retailers are preparing for another Black Friday, the blockbuster shopping day after Thanksgiving. Along with offering $300 laptops and $99 navigation devices, stores are planning new safety measures to make sure the festive day does not take another deadly turn.
Last year, frenzied shoppers at a Wal-Mart in Valley Stream, N.Y., trampled Jdimytai Damour, a temporary store worker who died soon afterward. To prevent any repeat, Wal-Mart has sharply changed how it intends to manage the crowds.
That new plan, developed by experts who have wrangled throngs at events like the Super Bowl and the Olympics, will affect how customers approach and enter the stores, shop, check out and exit. Each store will have its own customized plan. The hope is for an orderly Black Friday, a seemingly incongruous notion.
The most significant change at Wal-Mart is that the majority of its discount stores (as opposed to its Supercenters) will open Thanksgiving morning at 6 a.m. and stay open through Friday evening. Last year, those stores closed Thanksgiving evening and reopened early Friday morning. By keeping the stores open for 24 hours, Wal-Mart is hoping for a steady flow of shoppers instead of mammoth crowds swelling outside its stores in the wee hours of Friday….
Previous articles on Black Friday from Simplify Christmas–
- Black Friday, Part 1
- Black Friday, Part 2
- Black Friday, Conclusion
- Black Friday 2008: A Real Christmas Horror Story
- Black Friday Video Clips: The Best of the Worst
- Black Friday Video Clips 2008
- In search of the Meaning of Christmas
Why not try doing some low-key shopping locally, and dispense with Black Friday? More fun, less stress, and the money spent locally will either stay in our community or will go towards helping the less fortunate. A printable 5-page list of local holiday bazaars may be found here. Likewise, Christmas bazaars, and many free/low-cost holiday events are listed at the SimplyXmas Calendar, which is constantly updated from now right through until New Year’s.