Valdosta Daily Times


October 20, 2013

What happened to Thanksgiving?

VALDOSTA — It’s hard to believe that Halloween is almost here, in just a couple of weeks. I’ve always wondered how the people who buy candy a month or so before don’t eat it all before the holiday. Amazing self control, I suppose.

But what’s even harder to believe is that Christmas decorations are already out in so many stores. Thanksgiving has been bypassed for a while now, but it seems to be a more blatant snub these days. And with so many national retailers now deciding that early morning openings on Black Friday weren’t enough, and are now opening on Thanksgiving Day, it won’t be long before it’s not a holiday any more. As more people are required to work in stores and malls and restaurants on Thanksgiving, the holiday will become a thing of the past since families will no longer get to travel or spend time together that day.

Why can’t we have some sacrosanct time set aside to spend with loved ones? I like to shop as much as anybody, but there are limits, and Thanksgiving Day is one of them. It’s a day to cook, spend time with family and friends, eat way too much, often more than once, and watch football. Is it really asking for too much to keep a major holiday as a holiday for everybody?

Otherwise, we might as well cancel it now and go straight from Halloween to Christmas.

Business Roundup

Next Sunday is the opening day for Coyoacan, the Mexican restaurant from Quitman that is opening a second location on St. Augustine Road.

It’s odd that Hooters had their final health inspection last week, usually the final step before opening, but the Valdosta location still isn’t listed on the company website. In other words, they may be open this week, but I’ve seen nothing official that says so.

The Wendy’s on St. Augustine being fully rebuilt has an opening date in early November on their sign.

The Publix renovation on Gornto Road is nearly complete, and if you haven’t visited lately, you may need a map to find your favorite products. You could make it a scavenger hunt with your kids — “Let’s see who can find the ketchup the fastest.” The store does look really good and will just take a little time to get used to the new layout.

The new Kennedy’s Family Steakhouse in Lake Park is going in where the former Tavern was on Highway 41. No opening date yet, but should be in the next month or so.

I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the signage being up on Inner Perimeter where the new Valdosta High School will be located and was a bit taken aback by the response. This project has been underway for a number of years; it’s not new at all, and The Times has written about it several times in recent years. Not sure why it caught some people by surprise.

Steve Hall Flooring is now located in the strip center on North Valdosta Road where the Triangle Furniture stores are.

Still watching the construction progress on the Gondoliers Italian restaurant on Norman, the Remerton Mill Pizza Buffet and the Sam’s Club expansion. Hopefully all will be finished and open by the holidays.

I heard this week that Val-Optics on Patterson is apparently closed. I have had several panicked patrons call and ask about how they are supposed to get their glasses and I hope the company has someone answering the phone or helping them out now.

And as I reported recently, Fuji Gourmet in the mall recently closed as well.

As I mentioned in a story in this section today, a $25 million transaction of student apartments between local owners and an investment company from Atlanta took place recently, showing how much faith there is in the university and its future.

Speaking of VSU, the new Health Sciences building is really taking shape. It’s amazing how much difference putting the windows in place makes to the overall appearance, which looks to be on time for an end of the year opening.

That’s it for this week, but if there’s something I missed, please let me know!

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