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Black Friday is the Friday after Thanksgiving in the United States, which is the beginning of the traditional Christmas shopping season. The term dates back to at least 1966, although its usage was primarily on the East coast. The term has become more common in other parts of the country since 2000. Because Thanksgiving falls on the fourth Thursday in November in the United States, Black Friday occurs between the 23rd and the 29th of November.

Black Friday is not an official holiday, but many employees have the day off (with the exceptions of those employed in retailing and banking), which increases the number of potential shoppers. Retailers often decorate for the Christmas and holiday season weeks beforehand. Many retailers open extremely early, with most of the retailers typically opening at 5AM or even earlier. Some of the larger retailers (depending on the location) such as Sears, Best Buy, Macy's and Walmart have been reported to open as early as midnight on the start of Black Friday in localized areas and remain open for 24 hours throughout the day until midnight the following Saturday. Upon opening, retailers offer doorbuster deals and loss leaders to draw people to their stores. Although Black Friday, as the first shopping day after Thanksgiving, has served as the unofficial beginning of the Christmas season at least since the start of the modern Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1924, the term "Black Friday" has been traced back only to the 1960s.

The term "Black Friday" originated in Philadelphia in reference to the heavy traffic on that day (see Origin of the name "Black Friday" below). More recently, merchants and the media have used it instead to refer to the beginning of the period in which retailers go from being in the red (i.e., posting a loss on the books) to being in the black (i.e., turning a profit).
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Quick Tip by . November 23, 2012
Take a look at "The Drudge Report" and you will see incident after incident of greedy shoppers storming doors, shoving other customers, battling over sale merchandise etc. etc. etc. This is Absolute insanity! Count me out. I have been home raking leaves while my wife has been doing some fall cleaning. Frankly, we would rather be doing these things than being out there in the madness. We desire none of this stuff. My least favorite day of the year hands down! And it gets worse each year as the culture …
Quick Tip by . November 12, 2011
The one day of the year that I absolutely do not leave my home. I have never participated in a Black Friday sale and have no plans to in the future. I'd rather sit at home and eat leftover turkey than get clotheslined for a cheap television. If you're bored on Black Friday, call me at home. I promise I'll be there unless there's a medical emergency!
Quick Tip by . November 21, 2010
Theres a good deal or two to be had but careful what you buy. Those sale prices can be maybe a mere couple of bucks off of what you would save versus a regular sale and those blowout deals are usually for an inferior product. Careful what you buy versus the hustle and hassle.
Quick Tip by . November 29, 2009
I shopped Sat 11a-6p instead of Fri. Got everything done in 7hrs. Crowds were less than expected, but the drivers on the road were HORRIBLE!
Quick Tip by . November 23, 2009
I'll admit I participated once, but I did not stand in line in the middle of the night, I really dislike consumerism in general and the hype
Quick Tip by . November 23, 2009
This is my least favorite day of the year.  If I had my druthers I would really rather work and get another day off in the middle of February.  If I possibly can I just stay home.  Crazy day!
Quick Tip by . November 23, 2009
Is it weird that I avoid shopping on Black Friday? I try to avoid large crowds of people, even if it means eluding a "deal".
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