You’ve probably heard some of the madness that surrounds Black Friday, well it’s about to get a little crazier!
Black Friday is the start of the biggest shopping weekend of the entire year, it’s full of amazing deals, cheap TV’s and people who literally act crazy!
Here are the top 10 facts about the unique tradition of Black Friday!
- In the 1800’s, the term “Black Friday” was used in reference to the stock market crashes.
The term was used for the first time on 24th September 1869 when James Fisk and Jay Gould were trying to corner the gold market on the NYSE. However, the government stepped in and flooded the market with gold, causing prices to fall and many investors to lose their fortunes.
- The predecessor to Black Friday were the Santa Claus parades.
Over the years, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has become part of the holiday season rituals in America. However, the first “Santa Claus parade” was held on 2nd December 1905 in Canada. When Santa appeared at the very end of the parade, it was a signal to officially kick off the holiday season. American stores took their lead and began to have similar parades all across the United States. In 1924, the premier Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade was held. The parade was run by employees of Macy’s and featured some of the animals from the zoo in Central Park.
- Black Friday is the busiest day of the year for plumbers.
As bizarre as this may sound, it was reported by CNN who explain that the plumbers are needed to clean up after guests “overwhelm the system”.
- Holiday shoppers indirectly determined the date for Thanksgiving.
From the mid-19th to the early 20th century, the US president would declare a “day of giving thanks” on the last Thursday in November. This changed in 1939 when the last Thursday was the last day in the month. Retailers were afraid that the holiday season would be shortened and therefore, petitioned the president to declare the holiday be held one week earlier. In 1941, Congress created a joint resolution to clear things up. After that, Thanksgiving was always celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November, which gave shoppers one extra week to shop before Christmas.
- Black Friday was once called “Big Friday”.
According to a 1975 report from the NY Times, the term “Black Friday” is Philadelphia slang. This is because the police had become frustrated with the traffic congestion caused by shoppers on that day, and the retailers weren’t happy to be associated with traffic and smog. So, in 1961, one newspaper tried to rename the day as “Big Friday”, but, as you already know, this term didn’t stick around long. Though it had been popular in Philadelphia, “Black Friday” was not an official national term until the 1990’s.
- Black Friday wasn’t officially claimed to be the busiest shopping day of the year, until 2001.
It was thought of as being the biggest shopping day of the year, however, it was actually the Saturday before Christmas that beat it every year until 2001.
- Black Friday has spread to over 15 countries in the world.
For many years, Canadian retailers would worry when their customers went into the States on Black Friday in search for great deals, which forced them to start their own Black Friday deals, since then, various other places in the world have taken on this tradition including the UK, Brazil, India, France, Norway and many more…
- In Mexico, it is referred to as “El Buen Fin”, which translates to “the good weekend”.
This is actually attached to the anniversary of the 1910 Mexican revolution, which sometimes coincides with the American Thanksgiving. El Buen Fin actually lasts for the entire weekend instead of just one day.
- In 2011, Walmart broke the tradition of Black Friday.
The tradition of Black Friday shopping was broken when Wallmart opened up their store on the evening of Thanksgiving. Since that time, the retailers are engaged in a race against the clock to catch up with the times. These days, 33 million Americans plan to run out shopping as soon as they finish their Thanksgiving feast. This is known as Grey Thursday.
- 12% of Black Friday shoppers are drunk.
According to a survey conducted on behalf of the coupon site RetailMeNot, 12% of all Black Friday shoppers admit they hit the stores whilst under the influence of alcohol.
Well, there’s your ten facts! If you don’t like the madness of Black Friday, fear not, Cyber Monday is gaining in popularity, when millions of shoppers sit at home ready to click ‘add to cart’ when the item they’re watching goes on sale.
Whether you prefer Grey Thursday, Black Friday or Cyber Monday, this weekend is truly the biggest shopping weekend of the year.