Valdosta Daily Times

November 18, 2012

Kay's Column: Thanksgiving disappearing in early Christmas rush

Kay Harris
The Valdosta Daily Times

VALDOSTA — Thanksgiving is a bit early this year and for weeks, we’ve all seen the Christmas displays up and the sales flyers circulating. And this Friday is the biggest sales day for many, as shoppers will line up for bargains. But things are a bit different this year, as many stores are now opening on Thursday night rather than early Friday morning. Some large retail chains are being boycotted by employees, who are tired of seeing the precious few holidays they get each year eroded by corporate decisions.

Not sure how most people feel about the Thanksgiving evening openings vs. early morning Friday, but I think it’s a shame to see this new trend. Pretty soon, you won’t be able to tell what days are holidays anymore, which will erode the whole “black Friday” concept altogether. Traditionally, it’s the day when retailers go into the black and turn a profit for the year, not the largest shopping day of the year, which is the normally the last Saturday prior to Christmas.

I suppose if there’s one or two things that are must haves on your shopping list, and those items are going to be gone if you don’t get to them quickly, then the early shopping times may benefit you. And I’m also sure that the stores that do open early Thanksgiving evening will be full of shoppers. But those shoppers would have been there the next morning too.

It’s sad when traditions melt away, when family time is no longer sacrosanct, and when Thanksgiving, a time to remember all you are thankful for, becomes merely the first day of Christmas shopping.

Traditions only survive as long as they are observed, so does this mean Thanksgiving may soon be a thing of the past? Let’s hope not.

Christmas at the Crescent

One place where traditions are upheld is the Crescent, and this year, the Valdosta Garden Center is holding is annual Open House on Friday, Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. to 5p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 8 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 9, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The beautiful house will be decorated as an old fashioned family Christmas, and the event is free and open to the general public to enjoy.

Business Roundup

The topping out at SGMC of the new Dasher Heart Center and patient tower was a wonderful event and amazing to see. The new tower will open by late summer 2013 and hopefully the hospital will stop bursting at the seams and have a bit more room for all they offer.

Across the street, it’s exciting to see the steel beams of the ground floor of the new Health Sciences and Business Administration building go up. That project has moved very quickly from its groundbreaking and it’s always a good sign to see a project of that magnitude go vertical.

It looks like the new Korean Garden restaurant opening on St. Augustine where the Huddle House used to be will open soon after Thanksgiving in the next week or so.

The new Valdosta Vault jewelry store in the Valdosta mall is now open and they’re planning an official grand opening soon.

It looks like the new Taco Bell in Lake Park is going up now near the interstate exit.

No word still on the restaurant going in where the former Loco’s was. Everybody got excited when the exterior of the building was painted a few weeks back, but not much movement since.

The bank and the Publix on Inner Perimeter are both moving along well, and I can’t imagine the bank taking too much longer to complete.

Down from there, the new Kinetix Health Club should be opening soon. It’s in the North Oak Square shopping area.

And even farther down from there, the new site of a tire store by Publix is still being worked on, so hopefully we’ll find out which one is opening or moving there soon.

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