Black Friday deals beginning at 6 p.m.

Published 12:10 am Thursday, November 27, 2014

NATCHEZ — Today is the day the nation gathers to give thanks.

For some, those prayers of gratitude may include thanks for great deals snagged before the traditional Thanksgiving turkey even went into the oven.

Following the trend of recent years, the annual nation-wide Black Friday shopping spree isn’t just bleeding into the late hours of Thanksgiving Day — it’ll start with daylight.

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The earliest stores in the Miss-Lou will open for Black Friday deals will be 6 a.m. today at Kmart.

Walmart will never actually close ahead of the holiday — the only day it’s closed is Christmas — but a Natchez Walmart spokesman said the company will serve its associates a full Thanksgiving meal prior to starting the Black Friday doorbuster sales at 6 p.m. today.

Walmart will follow with other key promotions at 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. Friday.

In the Natchez Mall, Goody’s will open at 4 p.m. today, while Rue 21 and Belk will follow by opening their doors to customers at 6 p.m.

Walmart, Belk and Kmart will stay open throughout the night.

Belk Manager Mary Flach said the store’s employees were “very happy about the time” the store would open, and the experience of the overnight and early morning rush of shoppers looking for deals when they would normally be sleeping is one for which they’re ready.

“It’s a lot of fun for folks, and we look forward to having them,” she said.

“We are packed full (of special sale items) and we have got more than we have ever had — we are in great shape.”

Even as the national chain stores gear up for big sales, small businesses are preparing to receive customers looking for a personal touch to cool down after the madhouse that is a doorbuster sale.

Callie Godfrey, assistant manager at Diane’s Frame Shop, said the business would have its own Black Friday promotions, which would be followed the next day with Small Business Saturday giveaways.

Dianne’s is one of many local shops promoting the idea of Small Business Saturday.

“It’s just an opportunity to get people to shop small that usually don’t,” Godfrey said. “We offer things, services that the big box stores don’t, and keeping your money local helps the local economy. You can’t go wrong with supporting local folks.”