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Thanksgiving Becomes The New Black Friday for Area Shoppers

(Greendale)--It's a controversial trend started several years ago when some of the big box stores opened their doors on Thanksgiving. Now, major department stores are as well. In fact, locally based Kohl's and the Boston Store recently announced they would be open for business at 8 pm Thanksgiving evening.

Some we spoke with are in favor of it. They say it gives them time to work off their turkey and get a head start on holiday gifts. Others say it's hurting and disrupting family values.

Dr. Purush Papatla of UW-Milwaukee Business School studies online trends and how they impact consumer spending. He thinks web surfing and shopping, up 132 percent over the past five years, are the real reasons behind catering to the early bird shoppers. He says the department stores have to compete against online shopping, and they have to do whatever it takes to get the customer in the door.

And while there are those who want to flip the bird to early holiday shopping, there will always be the folks who venture out to shop. And of course there will be the ones willing to accept what they're spending.

There's one interesting fact about holiday shopping beside the earlier start time. It's estimated we'll be spending on average $421 per consumer throughout the holiday season.

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