Although it looks like Mother Nature may not be cooperative, with patchy fog and a chance of showers, shoppers throughout the Hudson Valley are ready to grin and bear some winter weather as they look for steals and deals as they unofficially kickoff the holiday shopping season on Black Friday.
While most are still sleeping off turkey and sweet potato pie, eager shoppers will flock to some of the area's busiest shopping hubs with an eye toward getting a jumpstart on holiday shopping.
At The Westchester and Galleria Mall in White Plains, they will be opening during their normal operating hours, but dozens of stores will feature specials, deals and promotions.
At the Cross County Shopping Center in Yonkers, shoppers can get there early on Thursday, when they close at 2 a.m. or wake up and head there when they open their doors early at 6 a.m., closing late at 10 p.m., and there will be free parking at Ridge Hill Shopping Center.
Black Friday sales have recently come under fire, as many feel the deals interfere with what should be family time during Thanksgiving.
According to the National Retail Federation, there has been a dramatic decrease in shoppers in recent years, from a peak of 147 million in-store patrons who spent an average of $423 in 2012 each to a low last year with just 102 million shoppers - against a projection of 135 million - who spent less than $300 apiece.
Additionally, the NRF is reporting that stores are expected to hire between 640,000 and 690,000 seasonal workers this year, down from the 700,000 workers hired in 2015 and 713,000 the year before.
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