Retailers divided on Thanksgiving Day opening


BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) – Black Friday sales have moved into Thanksgiving, but not all retailers are on board.

Michele Fraelich is the store manager for the Dillard’s location at the Southern Park Mall. She will not be working Thanksgiving Day. Fraelich and her employees will welcome shoppers beginning at 8 a.m. Friday.

“I think it is great. I work for a wonderful company that values family together time,” Fraelich said. “It is one of the things I loved about the company when I first started working for them in 1996. They value family time, which is important to me, and we are closed three days out of the year. Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.”

But just because Dillard’s is closed on Thanksgiving does not mean they are not participating in Black Friday.

“We have lots of little surprises up our sleeves for Friday morning,” Fraelich said.

She said customers appreciate it, too.

“I had a customer who was in a couple of weeks ago and she wrote me a note and wanted to make sure that my corporate office received it. She said this was the only place she was going to shop this holiday season because we are one of the few stores that will be closed on Thanksgiving Day,” Fraelich said.

Dillard’s employees are not alone. A number of local retailers will be closed on Thursday, including Bed Bath and Beyond, TJ Maxx and Hobby Lobby. Barnes and Noble is also on the list and issued the following statement:

“We want our booksellers to have the opportunity to enjoy what is a family holiday.”

While some stores will be dark on Thanksgiving, other retailers will be open even earlier on Thursday.

Best Buy will open their doors at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day and they are expecting big crowds. Supervisor Eric Johnson said people will begin lining up outside as early as Wednesday.

“If you can imagine a line wrapped around this building, that is essentially what you are going to have,” Johnson said. “We are having all kinds of savings. We are talking $50 to $200. I have seen that $4,000 television with a good $400 to $500 off.

Check store hours for Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday opening times.

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