Like turkey, pumpkin pie, and football, Black Friday has become a staple of the Thanksgiving season, and many local businesses are joining that shopping tradition by holding Thanksgiving night sales.
Though national companies are often the first that come to mind when it comes to Black Friday, small businesses, according to their owners, offer something that large stores do not.
“We really want everyone to have a good time,” Janie Angles of Janie’s Closet in Hillsboro said. “Big department stores don’t have that.”
“We offer a service that’s not in big chains,” Ann Young of The Rusty Star in Lynchburg said. “We have a different atmosphere, a different feel. It’s like dealing with a friend. It’s more personal.”
The sense of community that comes with a small business, Angles said, is the best part of her job at Janie’s Closet. Angles said she enjoys “getting to be in other people’s lives.”
Black Friday, she said, is an opportunity to do just that. “It kickstarts off the holiday season,” she said. “Everyone gets out and has a good time.”
Janie’s Closet, located at 203 North High St., will open Thanksgiving night from 5 p.m. until midnight. Everything, except jewelry, will be 10 percent off.
Angles said there will be cookies available for customers, and that there will also be a drawing.
“We usually have a great turnout,” Angles said. “Most people have a really good time.”
Similarly, Young of The Rusty Star said, “I always say that for Thanksgiving, it’s fun. If you don’t like football, and you’re sick of the kitchen, come and get a jump on the holidays.”
Young also said, “I think that it’s sad so many people take a negative look,” at Black Friday sales. “Generally, people go out with their families and have fun.”
Young added that Black Friday sales are beneficial to small businesses because of the exposure.
She said that local businesses sometimes have to compete with “bigger places,” but that a sale like Black Friday reminds people not to forget the “little guys.”
The fourth quarter of business (the holiday shopping season), she said, is ultimately crucial for businesses of any size. “It’s make or break for any business, small or retail.”
The Rusty Star, located at 240 Main St. in Lynchburg, will be open Thanksgiving day from 4 p.m. until 10 p.m. Items in the store will be 10 percent off, except red and orange tag items, which will have a greater percentage off.
The Rusty Star will be giving away ink pens. There will also be door prizes.
According to the Highland County Convention and Business Bureau website, many shops in uptown Hillsboro will participate in the Midnight Madness event on Thanksgiving night.
The stores that will be open Thursday evening and into the night for Midnight Madness shopping opportunities are: Shabby Moose & Co., Janie’s Closet, Georgia’s Bridal, Bon Appetit, and Twenty Four Exchange.
The event, according to the CVB website, will give consumers a chance to “get a jump on Black Friday savings and avoid the lines of the big box stores.”