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  • 3 Black Friday Myths

    Black Friday is just a few days away (hurray!), and since we just did a post about some Black Friday Facts, I think it’s time to debunk some myths. Ready? Let’s go!

     

    1. Doorbusters Are Only for Brick-and-Mortar Stores

    False. You don’t have to go to one of our Utah stores in order to get the amazing doorbuster deals (although that’s certainly an option). Our website has all the deals you’ll find in our stores, so if you don’t want to leave your house the day after eating all that mouth-watering turkey (or if you live in, say, not Utah), then head on over to beprepared.com to get your mitts on some absolutely amazing deals!

     

    1. You Absolutely Need That $300 HD LED 3D TV!

    A lot of times, shoppers get worked up over some pretty good electronic sales. As enjoyable as a big screen can be, they won’t be much use in an emergency. You’re much better off with a bunch of freeze-dried food, emergency water products, or alternative power sources. Actually, if you have another way of powering your electronics in the case of a blackout or other emergency, then that $300 TV might be useful after all. But make sure you have that generator first.

     

    1. It’s Called Black Friday Because That’s the First Day Businesses Go Above the Red

    1960s-traffic-jam - Black Friday MythsMany people believe that the name Black Friday references the point where businesses start turning out a profit (they go out of the red and into the black). But that’s no exactly true. Turns out, back in the 1960s, the term Black Friday referred to heavy traffic in Philadelphia. So if you do head out this Black Friday in your vehicle, you can drive with a smile, knowing you’re contributing to the day’s namesake.

     

    And there you go! Some fun Black Friday myths to impress your friends over Thanksgiving dinner! We hope to see you back on Friday when we’ll help you save big on a wide variety of products!

     

    What other Black Friday myths have you heard?

     

    BlkFri_SocialMed_Ad-3 - Black Friday Myths

  • 5 Black Friday Facts

    The day after Thanksgiving is renowned for its midnight shopping sprees, crazy low prices, long lines, and possibly violent crowds. But there’s a lot more to it than that. Many people believe Black Friday came about because that’s the first day (or close to) that retail sales go out of the red and into the black. However, the BBC report that there is no evidence of that. So what can you even believe? Well, here are five fun Black Friday facts to help sate your curiosity.

     

    1. Holiday Shoppers Determined Thanksgiving’s Date (Sort Of)

    While not necessarily about Black Friday itself, it does play a large role in the day in which we celebrate Thanksgiving. According to the BBC report, Thanksgiving was always on the last Thursday of November. Sometimes, this became the very last day of the month. In a tizzy, retailers petitioned President Roosevelt to move the date a week earlier so as not keep holiday shoppers back from their stores any longer. To this day, the holiday shopping officially begins the day after Thanksgiving, and for that, you can thank Franklin D. Roosevelt.

     

    1. Black Friday is a World-Wide Event

    The United States is no longer the solitary observer of this shopping holiday. Now, many countries throughout the world participate in the retail revelry. This is becoming easier and easier, since many companies are online. Countries that participate in Black Friday include Canada, the United Kingdom, Romania, Norway, South Africa, Panama, and many others.

     

    1. The Day’s Name Is Based On Heavy Traffic

    1960s-traffic-jam - Black Friday FactsIt’s true. At least In Philadelphia, the day after Thanksgiving saw heavy vehicle and pedestrian traffic. The term started in the early 1960s, and expanded out from Philly from then on. Other explanations also came about, but the blackness of the post-Thanksgiving shopping rush is too enjoyable a thought to dismiss, especially since that rush has only grown immensely over the years.

     

    1. It’s a Weeks-Long Camping Trip

    The record for longest campout in front of stores awaiting Black Friday deals is 22 days. In 2015, a man had been camping out since October. He was living in a tent, in front of a store, for 33 days. But he also did it to raise awareness for homelessness and collected toys and other things for needy local children, so at least he did some good in the process. Other campers, like the ones who slept outside for 22 days, do it to be first in line. No matter what your goal, however, camping is camping, and you’ll most certainly want to have some good ol’ camping gear along for the ride (HydroHeat, anybody?).

     

    1. Grey Thursday
    Black Friday Store Times - Huffington Post - Black Friday Facts via Huffington Post

    It’s a thing. In recent years, big-name stores would open bright and early on Friday morning around 6:00 a.m. (or, if you’re crazy like Kohl’s, 4 a.m.). As the years went on, the time to open the doors for Black Friday got earlier and earlier until stores were opening at midnight, the earliest possible time while still being in Friday. But, pretty soon, that wasn’t early enough, and Black Friday faded to Grey Thursday, and shops were open late at night on Thanksgiving, then in the evening, and now…right after turkey.

    More and more stores are opening their doors to Black Friday deals on Thursday. Now, once the turkey’s been scarfed down, it’s out the door to wherever it is you're going that’s opening early. According to some, this makes the actual shopping experience less crazy. Hey, it’s something, right?

     

     

    Now while you wait in the long Black Friday lines, you can “wow” your friends with these nifty tidbits of information. You’re welcome.

     

     

    What other fun Black Friday facts do you have?

     

    BlkFri_SocialMed_Ad

  • 6 Ways You Are Not Prepared For Disaster

    In regards to a May 7 story from the Weather Channel web site (weather.com) described “10 Things You’re Not Doing to Prepare for Natural Disasters,” I conducted a non-random, tiny sample size survey of 11 friends and relatives to see what they were and weren’t doing. Some of them said they felt pretty prepared for an emergency.

    I asked 11 questions based on the story from weather.com. The questions and results are at the bottom of this post.

    Let’s look at the top six things people weren’t doing.

     

    Do you have a disaster plan for your family?

    Not Prepared? Be Prepared!Only two people surveyed said they have a disaster plan.

    “I have a plan if there’s a [house] fire,” one said.

    A disaster plan covers what you might face in your area: wildfire, hurricane, or winter storm for example. Where do you meet if some of you are away? Do you shelter at home or evacuate? What are your escape routes? It should answer all those questions.

    FEMA has multiple templates for disaster planning including a “Family Communication Plan" and “Emergency Financial First Aid Kit.”

     

    Have you set aside a few hundred dollars in small bills?

    Not Prepared - Dolla billzSeven survey participants had not.

    “But we do have an emergency fund in a bank,” one said.

    You need cash for about a week, suggested Ann House, coordinator of the Personal Money Management Center at the University of Utah.

    “In three days, usually the electricity is back on, the heat is back on and stores are up and going, so if you want to be on the safe side, [keep cash for] a week. The rest can go in the bank,” House said.

    Another respondent had cash in larger denominations.

    House said that might not work.

    “If you were out of water and somebody came by with a water selling wagon, you might be giving the person a $100 bill for water. It’s $1 bills that are going to come in handy for emergencies,” she said.

     

    Have you got a full first aid kit including prescriptions?

    Not Prepared - First Aid KitOnly three participants kept a first aid kit ready with prescriptions.

    FEMA’s pamphlet “Preparing Makes Sense for People with Disabilities and Special Needs” recommends keeping enough daily medication for at least a week along with copies of prescriptions and dosage information.

    Many insurance providers won’t allow you to get more than a month’s supply of prescription medicines. One survey participant said his family keeps their prescriptions where they can grab them as they’re going out the door. That way they don’t have to get around insurance to obtain extra medicines.

     

    Have you practiced for a disaster?

    Not Prepared - PracticeFive said they had.

    One survey respondent said her church congregation hosted a community disaster event a couple of years ago. She didn’t say if she’d practiced since then. FEMA recommends practicing at least twice per year.

     

    Is your car ready for a disaster, including a gas tank at least half full?

    Not prepared - gasSeven said no.

    Start by getting a car kit together. It should include emergency supplies, tools, and a change of clothes, according to ready.gov.

    Next, make sure the vehicle is in good condition. Then plan where to go and how to get there. Ready.gov provides a commuter emergency plan where you can fill out alternate routes and modes of transportation.

    Most importantly, keep your gas tank at least half-full, Gwen Camp, director of individual and community preparedness for FEMA told weather.com. If you hit gridlock during an emergency and your tank is empty you might not make it to a gas station.

     

    Have you stored at least three gallons of water per person in your family?

    Not prepared - with waterCamp told weather.com you should store at least one gallon per person per day for drinking, cooking and sanitation.

    FEMA offers information about how to prepare and store water including bottle types to avoid and how much bleach to sanitize water.

     

     

    How are you doing in your emergency preparations? In what ways are you not prepared? You can take the survey and see my results below.

     

     

    Survey:

     

    How many of the following things have you done to prepare for an emergency?

     

    Y             N             1. Do you have enough food for your family for three days?

     

    Y             N             2. Have you set aside a few hundred dollars in small bills?

     

    Y             N             3. Do you have all your important records stored somewhere safe and easy to obtain?

     

    Y             N             4. Do you have an out-of-area emergency contact?

     

    Y             N             5. Have you stored at least three gallons of water per person in your family?

     

    Y             N             6. Do you have a disaster plan for your family?

     

    Y             N             7. Do you have a place to stay in an emergency, especially if you have pets? (many places won’t allow them)

     

    Y             N             8. Are you trained in CPR and/or first aid?

     

    Y             N             9. Have you practiced for a disaster?

     

    Y             N             10. Is your car ready for a disaster, including a gas tank at least half full?

     

    Y             N             11. Have you got a full first aid kit including prescriptions?

     

     

     

    Results:

     

    Table 1:

    Yes No Maybe/No answer
    1. Food for 3 days 11 0
    2. Savings in small bills 4 7
    3. Records easily accessible 8 3
    4. Out-of-area emergency contact 8 3
    5. Three gallons of water per person 7 4
    6. Disaster plan 2 7 2
    7. Emergency shelter 10 1 "our car"
    8. First aid trained 6 3 2 "not certified"
    9. Practiced for a disaster 5 5 1 "somewhat"
    10. Car prepared for disaster 6 5
    11. First aid kit with prescriptions 3 7 1

     

     

    Graph 1:

    Survey Graph

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