10 Alternatives to Black Friday Shopping
Black Friday is known as the official start to the holiday shopping season, but in recent years, many people are eschewing the mayhem to spend their time more meaningfully. For many people, Thanksgiving offers a rare 4-day weekend to connect with friends and family without the distractions of school and work. From venturing into nature to hosting a craft party, try one (or more) of these 10 alternatives to Black Friday shopping.
- Take it outside. While you might need an extra layer of clothes, fall is a great time to hike in Ohio. The trails are less crowded, some of the colorful leaves are still hanging around, and if you tend to overdo it on Thanksgiving dessert, you’ll get the added bonus of getting some exercise. Round up the kids and explore one of the many the trails in the Great Parks of Hamilton County, or, if the weather is a no-go, go to Ohio Caverns, where it’s a balmy 54º all year round. https://ohiocaverns.com
- Host a Friendsgiving leftover potluck. Friendsgiving is a growing tradition across the country. Keep it casual by asking everyone to contribute to a potluck-style dinner, cue up a sporting event or holiday movie, and enjoy a low-key day with friends and family.
- Have a Christmas movie marathon. There is no shortage of great movies to put you in the holiday spirit, from classics like It’s a Wonderful Life to The Grinch to spend the day snuggling under a blanket in your pj’s with plenty of popcorn and hot chocolate (with marshmallows!) on hand.
- Host a craft party. Invite friends to choose a craft or project and bring the supplies needed. Crafters of all ages will have fun testing their skills, and everyone will get to go home with fun projects to keep or give as gifts.
- Host a game day. Unplug with a day of board games, putting together a jigsaw puzzle, or hosting a euchre or ping pong tournament.
- Send a card to those unable to be home for the holidays. A Million Thanks and Operation Gratitude are organizations that accept letters and donations to send care packages to deployed service members, veterans, wounded heroes, and caregivers. Or, make cards for the residents of nearby hospitals or nursing homes.
- Start your holiday decorating. Reserve the day to go to a tree farm to pick out your tree, get out your decorations, or make holiday garland and ornaments with the kids.
- Clean out your closets and toy shelves. Take some time to make some room for the inevitable deluge of new toys and games that will soon invade your home. Make 3 piles: trash, donate, and keep. This is a great time to teach kids the concept of donating toys and books for others to love again.
- Volunteer. Spending the day giving to others is a natural extension of the spirit of Thanksgiving. Food banks and other charitable organizations are always looking for extra help during the holiday season, and volunteering with friends and family can become a cherished tradition of the holiday season.
- Support local small businesses. If you do decide to go shopping, make an effort to spend money at locally-owned brick-and-mortar shops for creative, one-of-a-kind items.