Thanksgiving Day Workers Offered Perks To Work the Holiday - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Thanksgiving Day Workers Offered Perks To Work the Holiday

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The list of stores that will be closed on Thursday is now much smaller than the list of stores that will be open. The list of stores that will be closed on Thursday is now much smaller than the list of stores that will be open.

KENNEWICK, WA - NBC Right Now checking in with local stores as many are set to open their doors for holiday shopping, a day earlier this year. That means more people than ever will spend part of their Thanksgiving working.

The list of stores that will be closed on Thursday is now much smaller than the list of stores that will be open. But, thanks to employee perks, a lot of places will be staffed on Thanksgiving with workers who volunteered for the shift.

"This year at Columbia Center, it's come early and stay late. We're going to be open for 26 hours straight, starting at eight o'clock on Thanksgiving," said Jordan Youngs with Columbia Center.

"This year is shorter than most years. So we only have three weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas. So retailers are doing everything they can to get all of those dollars into the register so that we can top last year," said Claire Clark, Old Navy's store manager.

Part of that is opening on Thanksgiving Day. That's a first for Old Navy.

"We actually had a lot of people volunteer to work because of the time and a half. And we provide meals for the employees all day. All night Thursday and Black Friday. And then we also get free holiday shirts and there's contests and prizes and all kinds of good stuff," said Clark.

Most retailers are offering holiday pay, even for seasonal workers. Walmart is offering that, along with a traditional Thanksgiving meal for all shifts, and an added employee discount for the day. Toys R Us workers get the option of wearing jeans and sneakers.

"Last year, a lot of our competitors opened at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. and they had great turnouts. So, I think with the entire mall being open, it's going to be even crazier than last year," said Clark.

"We actually haven't had a lot of negative feedback. We're giving people options. If they would like to come at eight o'clock, we're going to be open. We'll accommodate those shoppers. If they'd like to come a bit later, or the next day... We'll be open 26 hours straight, til 10 o'clock on Friday night," said Youngs.

The only major retailers, locally, that will not be opening on Thanksgiving are Barnes and Noble, Costco and REI. TJ Maxx, Burlington Coat Factory and Ross stores won't be open, either.
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