Are you planning to shop over Thanksgiving weekend? Here's what to expect at the stores

·2 min read
Southpark Mall will be closed on Thanksgiving, but opens back up for Black Friday shopping.
Southpark Mall will be closed on Thanksgiving, but opens back up for Black Friday shopping.

Are you thinking about getting your mother-in-law that Apple Watch, just to earn a spot on her good side? Maybe your kids have been clamoring about getting a Nintendo Switch to take on your family road trips.

Millions of Americans focus their shopping around Thanksgiving weekend to take advantage of the weekend's superior discounts every year. COVID-19 slowed in-person shopping last year, but things are expected to heat back up again this year.

The National Retail Federation is forecasting that nearly 2 million more people will be shopping from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday. Of those shoppers, about 65 percent are forecasted to do that shopping in-person, versus online.

If you're looking to browse shelves or visit a kiosk in person on Turkey Day in 2021, your local options are pretty limited.

Southpark Mall will be closed on Thanksgiving Day. Nearby Chesterfield Towne Center will also be closed on the holiday.

Target said on its website that it was had decided to close its stores again after seeing growth from its alternative forms of shopping, created for safety reasons throughout the pandemic.

Walmart announced in June that it would also be closed on Thanksgiving in 2021 as a way of saying "thank you" to its employees who continued working in-person through the pandemic.

With few exceptions, nearly all major retailers will be closed on Thanksgiving Day itself. Locally, CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid will remain open. Dollar stores like Dollar General, Family Dollar and Dollar Tree will also remain open. Expect most grocery stores to be closed in the Tri-Cities, with the exception of Food Lion, which will operate from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Black Friday Shopping

With Nov. 25 becoming somewhat of a bust from an in-person shopping perspective, many may turn to Black Friday instead. Malls and major retailers will come roaring back to life on America's largest shopping day.

While Thanksgiving itself is expected to have the lowest number of shoppers over the extended weekend, Black Friday is expected to be a busy day with 108 million people anticipated to buy on Nov. 26, according to NRF.

The trade association is also predicting sales from November through December to grow by between 8.5 and 10.5 percent over the previous year, and for total sales to hit somewhere in the region of $851 billion - both would be record-breaking.

Malls in the area will be opening their doors a few hours early for those looking to take advantage of the day's deals. Southpark Mall is open at 7 a.m. and Chesterfield Towne Center is scheduled to open at 9 a.m.

Best Buy has not shared how early it will open on Black Friday, though the Colonial Heights location typically opens at 10 a.m. Most Target stores are scheduled to open at 7 a.m. Walmart stores will open at 5 a.m. on Friday.

You can reach Sean Jones at Follow him at @SeanJones_PI. Follow The Progress-Index on Twitter at @ProgressIndex.

This article originally appeared on The Progress-Index: Here's what Tri-Cities shoppers can expect over Thanksgiving weekend

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