As Thanksgiving Day feasts are prepared and served, many peoples' minds are already on those Black Friday deals. While the official start to holiday shopping, once a simple weekend-long event, has turned into a weeks-long affair beginning as early as October, the coronavirus pandemic put a halt to stores remaining open on Thanksgiving Day in 2020, a trend that is continuing into 2021. Some stores, however, are keeping their doors open and welcoming customers hoping to get a jumpstart on their holiday shopping or needing to grab something for Thanksgiving dinner.
Given that Thanksgiving is a big day for travel, travelers will be thankful to know that 7-Eleven is open, meaning they can grab a quick snack when they stop to get gas. Numerous supermarkets and drugstores are also open this Thanksgiving, including CVS, Rite Aid, and Walgreens, though it is important to note that while most locations are open during regular hours, most pharmacies will be closed. People can also head to their local dollar stores, like Dollar General, Dollar Tree, and Family Dollar are all open on Thursday, albeit with shorter hours, with Dollar General open from 1 a.m. until 9 p.m. Outdoor lovers will even be able to head to Bass Pro and Cabela's, both of which opened at 9 a.m. Other stores open on Thanksgiving Day include Big Lots (7 a.m. to 9 p.m.), Cumberland Farms, Game Stop (hours vary by location), and Wawa.
Those living in the states of Maine, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, however, will be out of luck if they have to make a quick run to the store for a last-minute Thanksgiving dinner item or if they wish to get a jumpstart on Black Friday shopping. Stores in those states are closed on Thanksgiving due to state laws.
Among the numerous stores not open on Thanksgiving Day is Target. The retail chain announced on Monday ahead of all of those family gatherings that it had made the decision to close permanently not only on this Thanksgiving, but all Thanksgiving days in the future. In an email to employees, Target CEO Brian Cornell said, "What started as a temporary measure driven by the pandemic is now our new standard – one that recognizes our ability to deliver on our guests' holiday wishes both within and well beyond store hours." Cornell went on to share that employees "don't have to wonder whether this is the last Thanksgiving you'll spend with family and friends for a while, because Thanksgiving store hours are one thing we won't 'get back to' when the pandemic finally subsides." Target will be open on Black Friday, though the retailer has already begun its Black Friday deals.