America’s biggest mall won’t be open on Thanksgiving

Shoppers pile into a Macys department store in NYC on Black Friday last year. The Mall of America won’t be opening on Thanksgiving this year.

Every year, Black Friday shopping hours seem to creep closer and closer to the time Thanksgiving dinner is still hot on the table.

But, this year, the Mall of America is taking a stand against the trend. The country’s biggest mall will be closed on Thanksgiving Day, saying the day should be spent with family rather than than in shopping lines or even stampedes. The shopping center will open at 5 a.m. on Black Friday, ABC News reported.

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“We think Thanksgiving is a day for families and for people we care about,” Jill Renslow, the mall’s senior vice president of marketing, told The Associated Press. “We want to give this day back.”

Like so many shopping centers across the country, the Mall of America was kicking off the Black Friday shopping frenzy earlier every year.

The Minnesota mall first opened on Thanksgiving in 2012, with doors open at midnight. Then in 2013, it opened at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, and for the last two years, it has opened at 6 p.m. This year marks a major change of pace, but one that’s been mostly welcomed with open arms.

The Mall of America isn’t the only one to take a step back from Black Friday madness.

Dozens of retailers, from Nordstrom to Home Depot, are closing their doors on Thanksgiving Day this year. It seems they’re responding to growing calls from the public to put people over profit as the holiday shopping season approaches.

In fact, labor protests are starting to be as much a part of Black Friday as the shopping stampedes. Union workers have protested Walmart wages and policies on Black Friday for at least the past four years.

Last year, demonstrators showed up outside the Manhattan condo of the chain’s billionaire heiress, Alice Walton. They held up signs bearing calls for a $15 wage and slogans like “Poverty pay leaves workers hungry everyday.”

Over the years, Black Friday has been getting something of a make-over. Still, the pseudo-holiday’s tradition of insane shopping hours will probably continue.

Officials from the Mall of America said it will still have some security and staff on duty in case some stores still choose to open on Thanksgiving, ABC News reported. It makes you wonder if the days of Thanksgiving shopping will ever come to an end.

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