Stores Cut into Thanksgiving Day with Black Friday Sales

By Jill Kasparie, Reporter

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - It appears Thanksgiving is the new Black Friday.

Walmart will start slashing prices at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving. Best Buy will do the same.

Target will open two hours later at 8 p.m.; Kohl's also opens at 8.

There's a new shopping center to add to the list of stores opening at 8:00 p.m.: Lindale Mall. In just about a week and a half stores are hoping parking lots will be filled with cars and long lines by the doors.

Signs of the upcoming holidays are already popping up at Lindale. The traditional trees and Christmas ornaments are filling the walkways. This year, however, signs advertising Black Friday are a little different. Black Friday sales are staring Thanksgiving Day.

"I think it's a great idea," said Shopper Becky Mentzer. "I'm always looking for a chance to get out early and kind of beat the rush and get my shopping done so I can get home to the kids."

Some shoppers, like Mentzer, are eager to take part. Others said they don't understand the early rush.

"I don't approve of Thanksgiving Day, especially at 8 p.m. because that would be taking away from family time that would be taking away from a lot of things," said Shopper Elijah Krepfle.

Mall management said the early shopping opportunity is a good way to wrap up a holiday about togetherness.

Manager at Rogers Jewelers, Connie O'Connell, isn't thankful for this Thanksgiving trend. She said her jewelry shop in Lindale Mall will not open on the holiday.

"I believe in being with family and just because you work retail doesn't mean you don't have a family, so I think it's terrible," O'Connell said.

She said her company gave the store the option of opening with the mall on Thursday or opening on Friday. Employees decided the jewelry store would only open Black Friday morning.

"They don't mind the 7:00 a.m. They understand Black Friday, but if we had opened on Thursday, all of my employees would have been very, very upset," O'Connell said.

Many stores said the early openings give them the competitive edge as they officially kick off the holiday shopping season.
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