New York Town Says No to Walmart & 'Christmas Creep'

One upstate New York town is drawing a line and saying "no" to "Christmas Creep."

People stand in front of a Walmart store before the doors open at 5am on 'Black Friday' in Miami, Florida.
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People stand in front of a Walmart store before the doors open at 5am on 'Black Friday' in Miami, Florida.

This year there isan ever-growing list of retailersannouncing plans to expand their hours on Black Friday, and even extend them to Thanksgiving, a day when many stores had traditionally been closed.

But the local planning board of Victor, N.Y., has denied Walmart's request to expand its hours beyond its usual 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. window, arguing the extended hours would be an imposition on area residents. The board cited traffic noise, night lighting, and even the sounds of car doors slamming as arguments against the extended hours.

True, the hunt for sweet Black Friday deals on electronics, clothing, toys and other items typically bring large crowds of bargain hunters to Walmart and other stores each year on the day after Thanksgiving.

The retailer had hoped to extend its hours at the Victor location from 11 p.m. on Thanksgiving through its usual hours on Friday.

While this decision means this location won't have extended hours next week, most of Walmart's other stores will be open at midnight on Nov. 26.

The retailer had planned to offer two waves of discounts next Friday: one set of offers beginning at midnight and another at 5 a.m. Walmart's press release doesn't explain how the retailer will manage the flow of traffic into the store for the two sets of discounts.

But many retailers hand out tickets to those standing in line that grant them the right to purchase discounted items that are offered in limited quantities, and it is possible this is the retailer's strategy. (An inquiry about this was sent to Walmart, and was not immediately answered.)

In a local press account, Victor's planning board suggested Walmart consider making changes "in its advertising and in the times sales were offered, including making sales more generally available throughout the year, or gradually phasing them in throughout the holiday season."

This, however, is already occurring with "Black Friday" sales that began before Halloween—a trend often referred to as Christmas Creep—and no doubt the discounts will extend right up until Christmas Eve.

Of course, if the residents of Victor, want to get in on Walmart's Black Friday deals, maybe they should just fire up their computer from the warmth and comfort of their own homes, and shop for the deals there. After all, Walmart is planning some online-only offers as well.

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