black friday

Why Woodfield Mall Eliminated Overnight Black Friday Shopping Hours

The mall will still open Thanksgiving, but will close at midnight and re-open Friday morning

After years of stores opening earlier and earlier for Black Friday shoppers, some retailers and shopping centers are beginning to scale things back, including Woodfield Mall. 

According to the mall’s website, Woodfield will still open their doors on Thanksgiving Day from 5 p.m. to midnight, but will then close and re-open at 6 a.m. on Black Friday. Stores will remain open until 9 p.m., according to a list of store hours.

The move comes after several years of the mall staying open through the overnight hours of Black Friday. In 2018, the mall opened at 5 p.m. Thanksgiving and remained open until 10 p.m. on Friday, giving shoppers 29 consecutive hours of access to the mall.

In 2017, the mall had opened at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving and remained open until 10 p.m. on Black Friday.

So why the shift? 

"In reviewing shopping patterns for the past two years, it became clear that peak traffic periods were 5 p.m. to midnight on Thanksgiving, and 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Black Friday," the mall said in a statement. "Closing overnight gives retailers a chance to restock for Friday and the busy weekend ahead, without significantly impacting the demonstrated preferences of our shoppers. This change is consistent with Thanksgiving/Black Friday hours at most Simon malls across the country." 

Gurnee Mills, another mall owned by the Simon Property Group, will also have abbreviated Black Friday shopping hours. Stores will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving and will close at midnight, then re-open at 7 a.m. on Black Friday.

Not all Simon malls are adopting the changed shopping times. Chicago Premium Outlets in Aurora will not have the abbreviated hours, opening at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving and remaining open until 10 p.m. on Black Friday, making it one of the only malls in the area to open for 28 straight hours this holiday. 

Aurora police are preparing for "major crowds" and will have a traffic management plan in place, the department said. 

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