This weekend, most people across the country will be searching through sales papers and mapping out a plan for the biggest shopping day of the year. The day after Thanksgiving, known as “Black Friday”, is the day most folks get their Christmas shopping done.

People in Jackson County have several options around the downtown square in Scottsboro to find Christmas gifts, and most of those shops have some great deals. For the outdoorsman in your life, check out the deals at Scottsboro Tackle Company or Gonzo Tactical.

Gonzo Tactical is selling Glock 19 handguns for $415. Owner Matt Butler said the store will offer 25% off all shotguns, 25% off all AR-15s and 10% off everything else in the store. All apparel at Scottsboro Tackle Company will be 35% off on Black Friday.

It is having a buy one get one free deal on Shimano SLX rods. Scottsboro Tackle Company is offering 25% Huddleston Deluxe lures. It also has several deals on big names like Duckett, Halo and other items all day.  

Retail shops downtown will also have deals for everyone on Black Friday. The Sassy Nana, a women’s clothing store on the square, will have some extra items on sale. It will also let customers draw for a 10%, 15%, 20% or 25% discount off the customer’s most expensive item. Hammer’s and Goody Two Shoes are also having big Black Friday sales.

Unclaimed Baggage Center is having a huge Black Friday sale, as well. It is having a Black Friday Door Buster from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. UBC will offer 10% off all Apple iPads, Macbook Pros and Microsoft Surface Pros. Women’s Fall/Winter dresses and Men’s ties are half off.

All day on Black Friday and Saturday, UBC is offering 25% all tablets and e-readers (excluding Apple), women’s Fall/Winter Dresses, men’s ties and luggage. Customers can register for a $250 UBC gift card and enjoy free Crow Mountain apple cider in the store.

Shop local this Black Friday. There are stores all over Scottsboro where you can find everything you need for loved ones this holiday season.

Events and Marketing Coordinator and Main Street Scottsboro Director Meg Nippers said a personalized experience, boosting the local economy and the well-being of the community are three good reasons to shop small.

“Local business owners make customer service a top priority and shopping locally is a way to help a neighbor or friend provide for their family,” said Nippers. “Local business owners are usually the first to donate or support a charity cause. Show your appreciation by shopping small.”

The first recorded use of the term “Black Friday” was applied not to holiday shopping but to financial crisis: specifically, the crash of the U.S. gold market on September 24, 1869.

Two notoriously ruthless Wall Street financiers, Jay Gould and Jim Fisk, worked together to buy up as much as they could of the nation’s gold, hoping to drive the price sky-high and sell it for astonishing profits. On that Friday in September, the conspiracy finally unraveled, sending the stock market into free-fall and bankrupting everyone from Wall Street barons to farmers.

The most commonly repeated story behind the post-Thanksgiving shopping-related Black Friday tradition links it to retailers. As the story goes, after an entire year of operating at a loss (“in the red”) stores would supposedly earn a profit (“went into the black”) on the day after Thanksgiving, because holiday shoppers blew so much money on discounted merchandise.

Though it’s true that retail companies used to record losses in red and profits in black when doing their accounting, this version of Black Friday’s origin is the officially sanctioned—but inaccurate—story behind the tradition.

The true story behind Black Friday, however, is not as sunny as retailers might have you believe. Back in the 1950s, police in the city of Philadelphia used the term to describe the chaos that ensued on the day after Thanksgiving, when hordes of suburban shoppers and tourists flooded into the city in advance of the big Army-Navy football game held on that Saturday every year.

Not only would Philly cops not be able to take the day off, but they would have to work extra-long shifts dealing with the additional crowds and traffic. Shoplifters would also take advantage of the bedlam in stores to make off with merchandise, adding to the law enforcement headache.

By 1961, “Black Friday” had caught on in Philadelphia, to the extent that the city’s merchants and boosters tried unsuccessfully to change it to “Big Friday” in order to remove the negative connotations.

The term didn’t spread to the rest of the country until much later, however, and as recently as 1985 it wasn’t in common use nationwide. Sometime in the late 1980s, however, retailers found a way to reinvent Black Friday and turn it into something that reflected positively, rather than negatively, on them and their customers.

The result was the “red to black” concept of the holiday mentioned earlier, and the notion that the day after Thanksgiving marked the occasion when America’s stores finally turned a profit. (In fact, stores traditionally see bigger sales on the Saturday before Christmas.)

The Black Friday story stuck, and pretty soon the term’s darker roots in Philadelphia were largely forgotten. Since then, the one-day sales bonanza has morphed into a four-day event and spawned other “retail holidays” such as Small Business Saturday/Sunday and Cyber Monday. Stores started opening earlier and earlier on that Friday, and now the most dedicated shoppers can head out right after their Thanksgiving meal.

According to a pre-holiday survey this year by the National Retail Federation, an estimated 135.8 million Americans definitely plan to shop over the Thanksgiving weekend (58.7 percent of those surveyed), though even more (183.8 million, or 79.6 percent) said they would or might take advantage of the online deals offered on Cyber Monday.

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