Late Thanksgiving makes Christmas sales seem early

By Tarik Minor - Anchor, I-TEAM reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It's a week before Thanksgiving and Christmas tree tents are already popping up around town. Retailers are also offering Christmas sales already.

Carol Anne Ferrer doesn't mind getting into the holiday spirit in November. She was shopping for family gifts Thursday, realizing that Christmas is right around the corner.

"I really don't mind it. It makes me feel good, happy," Ferrer said. "I'm glad it's starting early."

The Christmas shopping season may seem like it's early, but in reality it's right on time, according to retailers, because Thanksgiving falls later on the calendar this year.

"Thanksgiving is a week later this year, so the time in between Christmas and Thanksgiving is five or six days shorter this year," said Deb Fewell, of Cowford Traders.

Fewell said shoppers will soon realize that Dec. 1 is the Sunday right after Thanksgiving. The folks at Severts Tree tent, however, are well aware. It's the reason why their Christmas tree shipment arrived Wednesday night.

If you buy a Christmas tree right now, how do you keep it fresh though the holiday season? Experts say as soon as it's given a fresh cut, it needs to be put in water immediately.

"The tree saps over after a day or two, and it won't drink water as readily when you put the fresh cut on it," said Tommy Hamby, who sells Christmas trees.

Hamby expects sales to pick up this weekend. He's urging his customers to buy their tree now so they can enjoy it through the winter season.

"Right now everything is fresh, and you have a choice of trees," Hamby said.

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