Tents line the
sidewalk outside the Best Buy store in Delafield
on Monday, nearly a week before Black Friday.
Best Buy will open at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving
WAUKESHA - More and more frequently, two
traditions collide in the United States on Thanksgiving:
enjoying a turkey dinner with family and getting great
deals on gifts and electronics. As a result, there is a
group of retailers promoting their stores being closed
on Thanksgiving Day with as much fervor as companies who
are heralding the great deals to be had on the holiday.
With customers already camping out in
front of Best Buy in Delafield, Gary Steinhafel,
president of family owned Steinhafels, said their
employees work so hard year round that they want to make
sure they have time with their families.
“We feel strongly that Thanksgiving is a
holiday that needs to be spent with the family,”
Steinhafels will be
closed on Thanksgiving Day.
During the year, Steinhafels furniture
store locations are open on weekends, at night and on
“We felt strongly that Thanksgiving is a
really special family day,” he said, adding that Black
Friday is a busy day for the stores so giving employees
Thursday off allows them to be restored, relaxed and
While most Black Friday shoppers focus on
the great deals at stores such as Target, Walmart and
Best Buy, even small businesses like Neptune Comics in
Waukesha feel the pressure.
“Basically you see all of the people go
to big box stores and you hope they don’t spend all of
their money and are able to spend a little to support
us,” said Neptune Comics owner Craig Lopacinski. “The
little guys like us get pushed out of the equation.”
Blain's Farm & Fleet
will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.
Neptune Comics will open an hour earlier
Friday at 10 a.m. The business will also have specials,
such as 20 percent off action figures or buy-one,
get-one half off on graphic novels Friday. Lopacinski
said the specials will be extended to the next day,
Small Business Saturday.
Other national stores closed Thanksgiving
are TJ Maxx, Barnes & Noble, and very notably, REI,
which also will be closed Friday in an effort to get
people outside. The nation’s largest co-op and specialty
outdoor retailer informed its 5.5 million members in a
letter its intent to be closed those days at all 143
locations, including in Brookfield.
Trending online is the REI-generated
hashtag: #OptOutside, which intends to reconnect people
with family and friends.
“Black Friday is the perfect time to
remind ourselves of the essential truth that life is
richer, more connected and complete when you choose to
spend it outside,” said REI President and CEO Jerry
Stritzke in a statement. “We’re closing our doors,
paying our employees to get out there, and inviting
America to OptOutside with us because we love great
gear, but we are even more passionate about the
experiences it unlocks.”
Another retailer that announced its plans
to be closed on Thanksgiving Day is Blain’s Farm and
Fleet, which has a location in Waukesha.
“Our company wouldn’t be here if it
weren’t for strong family values and traditions,” said
CEO and owner Jane Blain Gilbertson in a statement. “So
it goes without saying that we will close our doors on
holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. These are
special days meant to be spent with family and friends
and I want to give that opportunity to the 4,000
associates who work hard year round for our company.”
There are other locally operated stores
that will be open for shoppers on the holiday, including
Pick ‘n Save.
James Hyland, vice president of investor
relations, corporate communications and public affairs
for Pick ‘n Save’s parent company, Roundy’s, Inc., said
its stores will be open until 3 p.m. Thanksgiving Day so
customers can make last-minute purchases for their
“These hours are traditional hours for us
on Thanksgiving Day and have been in place for at least
the last 20 years,” he said in an email.
Kohl’s stores will open at 6 p.m.
Thanksgiving Day. Company spokeswoman Melanie Hochschild
said “Shopping over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend has
become a much-anticipated tradition enjoyed with friends
Hochschild said Kohl’s opens on
Thanksgiving as a “convenience to our customers who want
to make Kohl’s their first stop.”
Steinhafel said he knows that his company
may miss out on some sales by not being open on
Thanksgiving Day, but it is committed to being closed on
Steinhafels locations will open 8 a.m.
Friday and employees will need to arrive between 7 a.m.
and 7:30 a.m., Steinhafel said, but because the staff
will be prepared ahead of the sales they won’t need to
get there too early.