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Iowa State Daily

Black Friday shopping cuts into Thanksgiving for retail workers

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Posted: Thursday, November 22, 2012 10:32 am | Updated: 6:44 pm, Fri Nov 23, 2012.

With stores opening earlier than ever for the annual night of Black Friday shopping, employees had to cut time out of their Thanksgiving to get to work.

Last year, Wal-Mart took a different approach by leaving the store open but starting the deals at midnight. This year it began Black Friday at 8 p.m. Thanksgiving night.

Target stores across the country opened at 9 p.m. Thanksgiving night this year, a whole three hours earlier than last year, when doors opened at midnight.

This trend might be nice for some crowds of consumers eager to get shopping, but it leaves a lot of people cutting their Thanksgiving celebration short to get to work, including some ISU students. A manager from the Target in Ames said there were 10 ISU students working Black Friday this year.

Not only were students working in Ames, many were working retail jobs back home for Black Friday. Katie Butcher, sophomore in pre-law, works for both Hollister and Victoria’s Secret at the Jordan Creek Mall in Des Moines.

Butcher worked both jobs for Black Friday, putting in approximately 12 hours all together. This was Butcher’s third time working Black Friday for Hollister but her first time working one for Victoria’s Secret.

Although her hours don’t get in the way of Thanksgiving plans too much with both stores opening at midnight, Butcher said she has to make sure to leave her evening open. She said the night was “very hectic, it’s very busy and hot and not much fun.”

Most stores in North Grand Mall opened at midnight for Black Friday shopping, and they even added an incentive for shoppers. This year, the mall had a drawing to win a stuffed handbag, valued at $500.

Victoria’s Secret is one of the stores in North Grand Mall that opened at midnight for Black Friday. The store's category manager said this is new for them, as the store normally doesn't open until 4 or 6 a.m.

She also said for the most part, it is not hard for them to get people to work on Black Friday: “It’s mostly required to work.” 

The store manager of the Ames Victoria's Secret has worked Black Friday three times before and said it makes a difference to the business and is worth the hours. She said: “It’s very important, just as important as any other day."

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