JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY - Nearly 135,000,000 people shop on Black Friday every year, but now the trend is changing. As more stores are opening on Thanksgiving less people are shopping on Friday.
Records show 17 states including North Carolina started recognizing Black Friday as a holiday in 1975. The term Black Friday comes from the 1960's according to several social media websites. However, the shopping trend didn't start picking up speed until the last 20 years.
Mall tracker ShopperTrak found Black Friday sales reached 11.4 billion dollars in 2012.
Last year more than 200,000,000 people shopped on Black Friday, according to USNews. However, this year that number may be less as major retailers like Walmart, Best Buy, and area malls are starting to open Thanksgiving afternoon.
Local shopper Zach Aubin said a lot of people were at the Jacksonville Best Buy around 5 p.m. Thanksgiving.
"It was crazy. There were lines at the beginning of the store all the way wrapped around it," Aubin said.
People are lining up early on Thanksgiving day, and lines around 3 a.m. Friday morning are disappearing.
NewsChannel 12 talked to shopper Chevy Charles at the Jacksonville mall Friday morning. Charles said he didn't mind the smaller crowds.
"I've never been a big fan of the Black Friday crowd. So, I figured I would come while everyone is asleep. See if I can snag anything," Charles said.
However, shopper Hannah Bullard said Thanksgiving is for family and should stay that way for both families and employees.
"Keeping people at all hours because they have a special deal only on Thanksgiving? I see no point in them opening when they can just wait until Friday," Bullard said.
Bullard said these earlier opening times take away incentives of shopping in the early Friday morning hours.
"We've gone to Target, Best Buy, and Walmart. I mean all the places that are usually jam packed with people and there was nobody," Bullard said.
While the stores were quieter between midnight and six Friday morning, parking lots started filling up around 7 a.m. as people made their way to the second wave of Black Friday.
Shopper Charles Evigan didn't shop for deals until around seven Friday morning.
"It's just preference. I came a little late just because I don't really need the door busters. So, I just came out for a couple wants and that's it," Evigan said.
Now it's up to the consumer to decide between Black Thursday or Black Friday. However, if you missed these sales there is always Cyber Monday –one of the biggest discount online shopping events of the year.
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