Hats off to REI for Black Friday closing

rei

REI store in Mountain View, Calif.

As one who detests Black Friday and the mentality that accompanies it, I want to send out a huge cheer to REI President and CEO Jerry Stritzke. The outdoor equipment company will close its 143 stores on Black Friday and its 12,000 employees will be paid to take the day off and get outside. The theme of the day will be #OptOutside. There will be no Black Friday promotions, and online orders received Friday won’t be processed until Saturday.

CEO Stritzke: “For 76 years, our co-op has been dedicated to one thing and one thing only: a life outdoors. We believe that being outside makes our lives better. And Black Friday is the perfect time to remind ourselves of this essential truth. We’re a different kind of company—and while the rest of the world is fighting it out in the aisles, we’ll be spending our day a little differently. We’re choosing to opt outside, and want you to come with us.”

… “We think that Black Friday has gotten out of hand and so we are choosing to invest in helping people get outside with loved ones this holiday season, over spending it in the aisles.”

REI is a great store, very popular in the Denver area. In my estimation this is a bold step (not without risk), a first step toward stopping the Black Friday madness that has overtaken the nation, and I cannot overstate my appreciation of this move.

Congratulations, REI, for once again demonstrating your outstanding corporate values and priorities. Wishing you all the best in this holiday season.



Categories: holidays, Society

12 replies

  1. We’ve been members for years and just about all our outdoor gear we get there. I’m glad to see them do something reasonable, but I think it is a risk.

    • I’m a member too, though I don’t do much outdoor stuff anymore. I suspect most of their clientele will be supportive of the move. And I hope it will demonstrate to all the other stores that you can observe a proper Thanksgiving holiday (for your employees and customers) and still have more than enough time to sell all your Christmas merchandise.

  2. REI might be taking a calculated risk,however they have my total support. I do not support or buy on blak Friday.Family time must come first. THANK YOU REI!

  3. Plus, they sell good products. I still have a windbreaker I bought 17 years ago. One piece finally snapped a couple of months ago, so I’ll just get another one.

  4. ‘Tis a grand old gesture for sure, one which the employees will certainly be grateful for but I think it goes without saying it is one which will gather no moss – moss being in this case other like retail businesses. Money will always and forever win the day and the employees who are affected will just have to grin and bear their fate of being unwilling participants. Happy Thanksgiving? Ehhhh… not so much for the working lot probably. 😦

  5. Much applause from here, too. Always liked the store – and have found they do carry all sorts of stuff around the holidays for gifts – even for non-hikers. (Have you seen they get holiday flavored Cliff bars like Gingerbread? Last year they had 4 flavors we couldn’t find anywhere else…but that may just be here. Those bars were a real hit as Santa stocking gifts.)

"Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance." ~ Plato

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