We kinda-sorta don't want to tell you about these deals. You're not interested in a KitchenAid stand mixer, right? Totally not useful. *Ahem*
The whole idea of waking up before dawn the day after Thanksgiving to swim through the mall crowds in search of that 75-percent-off flat screen TV is virtually gone. Well, tell that to the sea of ambitious shoppers. It seems moot to call it a Friday event though, because stores keep changing their hours and extending the day to Thursday (when we're supposed to be having quality gorging-family time) and the following weekend.
And then there's Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday. Got that?
But this nationwide mega sale is bigger than ever, and it helps you score envy-inducing deals on food, dining, entertaining, and kitchen items you want to get for your loved ones — and yourself. Umm, you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others, right? It's the airplane safety-mask rule.
The idea behind Black Friday stems from the 1940s, when people kept calling in sick to work on the Friday between Thanksgiving and the weekend. Without work, they often got ahead on their holiday shopping. Business owners, as well as employers, took note.
The retail industry will tell you the name of this shopping day comes from business owners going from being "in the red" to "in the black" in their ledgers. But the Black Friday name first became famous in Philadelphia. A 1966 advertisement in The American Philatelist revealed local police's term for the day when crowds poured into the downtown Philadelphia shops and traffic became a snarling nightmare. The name can even be traced earlier, to the 1950s, when shop ladies used the term to complain about the chaos.
On that note, let's shop! (That didn't discourage you, did it? That Vitamix is calling…) Remember, Friday is mostly for in-store shopping, and Monday for online shopping. So be sure to check whether the deal you spotted is for in-store, online, or both.
You can find several sites and individual shops that will let you input your email address to be alerted to the sales as soon as they start. Because this is a race. In the world of competitive shopping, this is the Boston Marathon.
Black Friday Resources:
A Few Major Retailers
When: Thursday, Nov. 24 through Saturday, Nov. 26
Sweetest Picks: Anova sous vide Bluetooth precision cooker for $99; Rachael Ray 14-piece porcelain-enamel aluminum nonstick cookware set for $89.99
Amazon does not have a traditional Black Friday ad because they're online only (So Cyber Monday), besides a few brick-and-mortar stores. But they typically release new deals every hour starting the week of Black Friday.
Here's the scanned Black Friday ad.
When: 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 24 in-store and all-day Friday, Nov. 25, in-store and online
Sweetest Picks: 5-quart Crock-Pot slow cooker for $9.76; Magic Bullet 7-piece blender set for $19
Macy's was one of the first to let us know what's up with their online reveal.
When: Shop all day online Wed., Nov. 23 through Sat., Nov. 26; shop in stores 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 24 through 2 a.m. Fri., Nov. 27, plus 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sat.
Sweetest Picks: KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer for $279.99 (regularly $499.99), plus 20 percent off attachments; Christmas dinnerware for 65 percent off, Lenox, Spode & Winterberry
5. Best Buy
Best Buy's Black Friday preview ad shows big-ticket kitchen appliances with huge markdowns, sometimes over $1,000 in savings.
When: 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 24 through Saturday, Nov. 26
Sweetest Picks: LG door-in-door 28.5-cubic-feet French door refrigerator with through-the-door ice and water for $2,199.99 (save $1,200); Chefman Express Air Fryer for $49.99
6. World Market
World Market's website says check back soon here.
Amy Sowder is a NYC-based food and fitness writer as well as the assistant editor for Chowhound. She loves cheesy things, especially toasties and puns. She's trying to like mushrooms. Her running habit is the excuse for her never-ending ice cream pursuits. Follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and her blog, What Do I Eat Now. Learn more at AmySowder.com.