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Stores remain closed on Thanksgiving Day ahead of Black Friday preparations

Thanksgiving for some means feasting and football and for others it means getting a head start...
Thanksgiving for some means feasting and football and for others it means getting a head start on Black Friday shopping.(WJHG)
Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 10:08 PM CST
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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Thanksgiving for some means feasting and football, and for others it means getting a head start on Black Friday shopping.

However, empty parking lots and next to no foot traffic could be seen at Pier Park on Thanksgiving Day. This is because many, if not most stores decided to stay closed.

“It is a little odd and it’s somewhat disappointing. I’ll look in the window and see something I really like and then the store is closed. That kind of sucks,” Vacationer Jaydon Carlson said.

Even big retail stores like Walmart, Target, and Michaels made the change to permanently stay closed Thanksgiving. Initiative shoppers said is better.

“I think it’s positive. I think it’s good to be with friends and family and take the whole day off,” Vacationer Graeme Coates.

“I kind of understand when you talk about the perspective of people staying at home with families, but it is kind of disappointing,” said Carlson.

A disappointing sight for some could also be seen over in Panama City. Best Buy is notorious for having long lines of people waiting on Thanksgiving Day. But this line isn’t as long as usual.

“I think things are changing because of technology. A lot of people do it online these days and keep away from the long lines and waking up early to go to the store,” said Coates.

And some believe the pandemic is the reason for the Black Friday changes.

“Yeah, it’s mostly all online now. I know it used to be a big thing with everyone lining up and everything, but you just don’t see it anymore,” Panama City Beach Resident Jessica Hoving.

Even though you might not see long lines and open stores on Thanksgiving Day, shoppers seem to be welcoming the change.

And for those who want to continue the tradition of getting up early on Black Friday, Best Buy will be open at 5 am, as well as Walmart. Target opens up at 7 am.

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