Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, has become the accepted if unofficial start time of the Christmas rush. It's a huge day for retailers but only the first of a roughly month-long extravaganza.
And thanks to Abe Lincoln, who decreed Thanksgiving a national holiday, Franklin D. Roosevelt, who signed into law that it should fall on the fourth Thursday in November, and Pope Gregory XIII, who blessed the calendar we use by papal bull, 2012 has the longest possible shopping season.
To explain: Because Nov. 1 fell on a Thursday, the fourth Thursday and Thanksgiving, Nov. 22, couldn't fall any sooner. And that means there is more time – the most time any year can provide – for shoppers to shop and businesses to reap bounty.
If you have a black belt in Black Friday shopping, listen up: Area big-box retailers are gearing up to dazzle bargain hunters even earlier this year—starting Thanksgiving Day.
Walmart, Toys R' Us, Target and Best Buy are planning all-out holiday shopping assaults.
Beginning at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, Walmart, located in Genoa Township, will offer holiday doorbusters, while supplies last. These include deals on TVs, iPads, an electric scooter for $79 and a steam mop for $39.
Toys R' Us also offers doorbusters beginning at 8 p.m. Deals include $80 off an Android tablet and 50 percent off on Power Wheels.
Target's deals begin an hour later, at 9 p.m. According to an ad leaked online, the best deals will be for a Nook, TVs, a Nikon camera and an XBOX 360 Kinect bundle.
At Best Buy, doors open at midnight. Doorbusters include deals on TVs, phones and a Samsung laptop bundle.
Walmart will offer its biggest deals from 10-11 p.m. Thanksgiving night. The store will offer three items at low prices — an iPad, a TV and a Blu-Ray player — and if the store runs out, you can still buy them but must register for them online by midnight and they'll be delivered to your local store.
Kohl’s is also releasing Black Friday deals earlier than everby allowing shoppers to purchase them online starting Wednesday, Nov. 21 and in stores at 12 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 23. The sale event Includes More than 500 Early Bird Specials and $15 Kohl’s Cash for every $50 spent.
According to TheBlackFriday.com, several other stores will also have "doorbuster" sales Thursday night or at midnight Friday, including Old Navy and Macy's stores.
For the early morning traditionalists, several stores open at 4 a.m. with special sales. If you want to keep up with all of the Black Friday deals, you can check your favorite retailers' Facebook pages.
Want to avoid the holiday shopping mega-crowds altogether? Look for Cyber Monday deals on Nov. 26 or visit your local Mom 'n Pop retailers on Small Business Saturday, Nov. 24.