“Black Thursday”

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I drove by Walmart, K-Mart, and Shopko at about 8:15 tonight, and it is indeed crazy – the parking for Walmart has spilled over to the Chinese restaurant to the east, the car wash to the west, and is lining both sides of Smelter.

But holy cow, so many people complaining about some stores being open on Thanksgiving night.

The two most common complaints I’ve seen are:

– This is horrible! Why don’t the employers let their people enjoy the holiday at home with family?!?!?

– Greedy shoppers!

To the first point: not everyone wants to eat a traditional family meal at home with their family on Thanksgiving. Some people don’t really care about Thanksgiving. Some people sign up to work the shift because it pays time and a half. And just because they are working at, say, 9 pm doesn’t mean that they didn’t get to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal at home.

As for the second point: Um…duh. There are lots of people who are looking for bargains. Why is that a problem? If you don’t want to go out and brave the crowds – I certainly don’t! – then you don’t have to.

UPDATE: And, as Kirsten points out in the comments – many of these shoppers are visiting Great Falls from Canada!



  1. And you have to remember, a lot of our shoppers are Canadian, and it’s not their thanksgiving. That was back in October. They leave a nice chunk of change in our city for black friday.

  2. I noticed that many stores online were offering ‘Black Friday’ deals as early as Wednesday. So much for Cyber Monday. But yes – I can remain blissfully at home. I don’t buy into the marketing blitz that causes normal people to do crazy things at strange hours.

  3. I don’t care one way or the other about people shopping for Black Friday deals. People can choose to shop and employees do sign up for shifts due to higher pay. I feel bad for people that HAVE to work on the holiday but alot of people work holidays including nurses, doctors, police, MILITARY etc. When I had my antique store downtown I always felt that while many people chose to shop the big stores there was always a group of people that appreciated the smaller store experience. Many small stores can’t compete price wise with huge sales during the holidays (I certainly couldn’t). But the downtown stores compete in other ways like unique and one of a kind items and hands on customer service because more than likely the owner is at the store all the time. Good luck today to my former neighbors especially Feather your Nest and My Viola.

  4. Ron: amen – I have no animosity toward Black Friday shoppers, retailers, or deals – but there ain’t no way I’m standing in line for hours or fighting for deals when it can ALL be done from the comfort of home!

    Nicki: Right on, baby! Your store was AWESOME (for several obvious reasons!) – and oh, how I love My Viola!

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