Never say never.
Last year, when Miller Hall Mall opened at midnight on Thanksgiving Day for the first time, up from 4 a.m. on Black Friday the year before, a mall spokeswoman said she didn’t see the mall ever opening earlier for the kickoff of the traditional holiday shopping season.
“Too many people would stand up and say, that’s too much, she said. “We do appreciate Thanksgiving, especially in the Northland.”
Apparently not enough.
It’ll be eat, then shop on Thanksgiving for more of us.
The Duluth mall will open at 8 p.m. this year, four hours earlier than last year to kick off its Black Friday sales. Anchor stores Younkers and J.C. Penney are officially on board. And most of the mall’s more than 100 retailers likely will follow.
For Penney’s, it’ll be the first time the store has opened on Thanksgiving Day. Last year, the chain steadfastly stuck with its traditional 6 a.m. Black Friday opening. That turned out to be too old-school in today’s retail world. To keep up with the competition and to bolster its sales in a disappointing year, most of Penney’s stores will open at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving.
So far, Sears, another Miller Hill Mall anchor, isn’t saying when they’ll open on Thanksgiving Day. But last year Sears was the early bird, opening at 8 p.m., and chances are they’ll push that even further this year.
Target will again open Thanksgiving evening, but whether it will join the “holiday creep” disregard for the holiday and open earlier than last year’s 9 p.m. kick-off, hasn’t been announced.
All this means Kmart, long the retail black sheep for being open on Thanksgiving Day, may actually have been ahead of its time.