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Five Things to Start Your Black Friday: Nov. 23

A few facts, figures and tidbits before heading out with the other crazed shoppers.

1. BLACK FRIDAY SHOPPING FORECAST:

Friday: Partly sunny. Milder. Highs in mid/upper 50s.

Saturday: Mainly cloudy with a few rain showers — it may end as a few wet snow showers in the Worcester hills. Highs in the upper 40s early then temps crash into the upper 30s by night.

Sunday: Cold and windy. Clouds and sun. Maybe a flurry. Upper 30s to near 40 for highs.

2. BLACK FRIDAY HISTORY: The term “Black Friday” was coined in the 1960s to mark the kickoff to the Christmas shopping season. “Black” refers to stores moving from the “red” to the “black,” back when accounting records were kept by hand, and red ink indicated a loss, and black a profit. Ever since the start of the modern Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1924, the Friday after Thanksgiving has been known as the unofficial start to a bustling holiday shopping season.

3. BLACK FRIDAY MYTHS:

  • Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year.

4. BLACK FRIDAY FACTS:

  • Nearly 135 million people shop every year on Black Friday.
  • In 2010, 212 million shoppers spent $39 billion for an average spending amount of $365.34.
  • In 2008, Jtimytai Damour, a Long Island Walmart temporary employee, was trampled to death at Green Acres Shopping Center.

5. BLACK FRIDAY STATS YOU MAY HAVE NOT KNOWN:

  • The National Retail Federation reports that 51.8 percent of U.S. consumers will be doing their holiday shopping online this year, up 5 percent from 2011.
  • According to a survey, 52.9 percent of smartphone owners and 64.1 percent of tablet owners will use their devices to do research and make purchases.
  •  Shop.org forecasts that online holiday spending alone this year will amount to a whopping $92 to $96 billion.

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