Retailers to Begin Black Friday Sales on Thanksgiving

Walmart, Target and Kmart included in turkey day sales.

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, Target and Kmart are planning all-out holiday shopping assaults.

Beginning at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, Walmart will offer holiday gifts for the entire family, while supplies last. That includes an electric scooter for $79, a steam mop for $39 or men's jeans for $9.50.

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, TV and Nikon camera.

Kmart's mega-deals will begin in-store throughout the day on Thanksgiving, with special deals beginning at 8 p.m. Thanksgiving Day continuing until 3 a.m.

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.

The Ellenton Premium Outlets have successfully lured shoppers out of bed in the past and will continue with its Midnight Madness sale starting midnight after Thanksgiving and remains open until 10 p.m. Friday. Select stores will open at 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Nov. 22 and Brooks Brothers, Time Factory Watch Outlet and U.S. Polo Assn will open at 11 p.m.

According to TheBlackFriday.com, several other stores will also have "doorbuster" sales Thursday night or at midnight Friday, including some Toys R Us, Best Buy, Kohl's, hhgregg, 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.

If there's an upside to spreading out the Black Friday wheeling and dealing, it could possibly lessen the early-morning mega-crowds. A Walmart seasonal employee was trampled to death by a crowd estimated at 2,000 shoppers four years ago at a store in Long Island, N.Y., when its doors opened at 5 a.m., according to The New York Times.

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.

Who has the best Black Friday deals in St. Petersburg from your experience? What's your strategy for tackling the crowds at the area malls and shopping centers?

cherylwithac November 17, 2012 at 03:52 PM
I wish that this trampling rush to buy material things that the purchasers probably won't care about in a year is completely ridiculous. "Black Friday" is pushed by companies like Wal-Mart because it's the start of the most lucrative shopping days--for the stores themselves--of the year. If people want to jump off the cliff like hoardes of sheep, that's their business, but they should be aware that when Wal-Mart says "jump," they're jumping. The winners of the Black Friday are the stores, not the consumers, who are frankly just making fools of themselves and probably spending money they don't have anyway. The holidays have become a farce.
Bill Stokes November 19, 2012 at 06:41 PM
If you are tired of this witless consumerism, premature holiday decorations, and black Friday's sales starting days in advance, fight back and join the national "Buy Nothing Day" the Friday after Thanksgiving. If you must succumb, patronize local businesses.
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