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Atlantic Station urges retailers to close on Thanksgiving Day

Retailers are beginning to announce their hours for Thanksgiving and Black Friday -- the unofficial kick off to holiday shopping season. But after many years of opening for business on Thanksgiving, many retailers are changing course.

Atlantic Station has urged its retailers to stay closed on Thanksgiving. This week, in a memo, Barbara Garrett, the general manager of the 138-acre mixed use property, encouraged 46 retailers to close on Thanksgiving Day to allow workers to spend time with family and friends. To date, 41 retailers (89 percent), plan to close.

“Our guests prefer to spend time with family on Thanksgiving, and we’d like to extend that option to our retailers’ employees,” said Garrett in a statement.  “Closing on Thanksgiving will not only boost employee morale, but also allow our retailers to refocus efforts on Black Friday, a more lucrative shopping day for our retail mix."

Garrett said feedback from retailers has been positive. Last year, several retailers nationwide began the trend of staying closed on Thanksgiving. Von Maur, has always had the policy of closing on Thanksgiving Day. This year, they are joined by fellow department stores like Dillard's.

Black Friday used to mark the kick-off to the shopping weekend with stores opening in the early morning hours on Friday, but around 2012 retailers kicked off sales at midnight on Thursday and subsequently pushed opening hours all the way up to 3 p.m on Thanksgiving in some cases.

While other local malls, including Arbor Place Mall in Douglasville, have also announced they will not be opening on Thanksgiving, Simon Property Group and General Growth Property -- other large mall owners with properties in Atlanta -- have not yet announced their plans.

In addition, major retailers such as Macy's, Target and JC Penney have also not officially announced their hours for Thanksgiving Day.

According to some reports, Macy's is planning to open an hour earlier than last year at 5 p.m. Macy's officials have not yet confirmed the rumors and said they will release holiday hours later this month.

The list of Atlantic Station retailers closing on Thanksgiving includes:

  • 2 Chez
  • American Apparel
  • Ann Taylor
  • Athleta
  • Athlete’s Foot
  • Atlantic Grill
  • AT&T
  • Banana Republic
  • Bath & Body Works
  • Boneheads
  • California Pizza Kitchen
  • Copeland’s Cheesecake Bistro
  • Dermalogica
  • Dillard’s
  • DSW
  • Eye Gallery
  • Fab’rik
  • Francesca’s
  • GAP
  • Great American Cookie
  • H&M
  • Icing
  • Jos. A. Banks
  • Journey’s
  • Kate’s
  • Kinnucan’s
  • Land of a Thousand Hills
  • Loft
  • Lush Nail Bar
  • Meehan’s Public House
  • Moe’s
  • Pandora
  • The Pig and The Pearl
  • Publix, Subway
  • Tin Drum Asia Cafe
  • Tony’s Barber Shop
  • West Elm
  • Yard House
  • Yogli Mogli
  • Z Gallerie

Even if malls are closed, standalone retailers or retailers with exterior entries, can choose to open. Some retailers at Atlantic Station will offer special holiday hours including Old Navy and Regal Cinemas 18. For more information about store openings and Black Friday hours, visit Atlantic Station at

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About the Author

Nedra Rhone has been a features reporter with the AJC for 10 years. She’s written about everything from fashion to food to news.