Christmas in October?

When I went home for our midterm break, I had to run some lovely errands with my mother, one of which was going to Lowe’s (everyone’s favorite place right?). When I walked in through those doors with my mom, I stopped. I stared at one area to the right of me with my mouth wide open. It was like I was in a trance and the only way I came out of it was when my mom ran into me because she wasn’t paying attention.

She said, “Jules! What are you doing?!” I looked at her and pointed to the room on our right and said, “Look!”

Christmas decorations everywhere! From the fake trees to the inflatables you put on your front lawn to the mechanical light-up reindeer. It was unbelievable. it wasn’t even Halloween yet! I was in complete shock that I vented to my mom the entire time we were at Lowe’s. At one point, I wanted to go and ask an employee if they knew it was only October 8… (Of course I didn’t but I really wanted to!)

Shoppers walk by artificial trees displayed at Lowe’s.
Image courtesy of latinpost.com.

A couple of summers ago I used to work at Hallmark, and I will never forget when it was the month of July. My boss looked at me and said that this is the busiest month of the year, and I remember being really confused. She pulled out this huge box and when she opened it, it was full of Christmas ornaments.

Yes, if you read back to see if I mistyped, I didn’t. This was in fact July, and I did say Christmas ornaments. After the ornaments were up for grabs, you would be amazed at the amount of people coming in to grab the ornaments and calling to see if we had certain ones left. It was insane! Apparently Hallmark does this annual event called “Christmas in July.” The employees have to take a little quiz to make sure we know which ornament is which and know what every single one of them does. It was crazy. When I asked why we did it, my co-worker said, “I really don’t know why, but it gets really crazy in here when this display opens up.”

Christmas comes a little early at Hallmark.
Image courtesy of flickr.com.

But why do stores start putting Christmas decorations up so early? I have looked everywhere on the internet and I cannot find an answer. In fact I have just been running into other blog posts asking the same exact thing. Many things that came up about the stores is that the Christmas season is when they make the largest profit. But personally, I am not going to want to buy Christmas stuff now. Just like my family, we are going to wait until the beginning of December to buy everything and decorate our house…and sometimes we wait until the last minute.

Maybe some stores use it as a competition strategy against other stores, or maybe the owners are just really into the Christmas spirit. I mean Walmart in Olean, they are doing pretty well. They are not just attacking you with Christmas decorations when you first walk in. The first thing you see is just a friendly little reminder that Christmas is in “X” amount of days. Then you walk through the store and see the candy isle which is now Christmas candy. When you head to the decorative items, they still have the Thanksgiving decorations there. It’s not like Lowe’s that shouts “CHRISTMAS!” when you walk in.

Some stores are different when it comes to Christmas. Some like to start really early like Hallmark while others like to start in October like Lowe’s. Then there are those that like to drag it out slowly like Walmart. Personally, if I owned a store I wouldn’t put out Christmas decorations until after Thanksgiving. We may never know why certain places like to skip over Thanksgiving and go right to Christmas…we may never know.

-Julia Rodriguez  

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