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Survey: Shoppers ready for Thanksgiving weekend

Up to 140 million people intend to shop over the Thanksgiving weekend Nov. 28 through Dec. 1, a slight drop from the 147 million who planned to do so last year, according to the National Retail Federation.

Of those 140 million, nearly 33 million, or 23.5 percent, told the NRF they planned to shop on Thanksgiving Day.

“Black Friday” is expected to be the biggest shopping day, with 97 million people, or 69.1 percent, planning to shop. Sixty-one million, or 43.8 percent, will shop on Saturday, the federation’s preliminary Thanksgiving weekend shopping survey found.

In 2012, shoppers spent an average of $423.55 over Thanksgiving weekend, or nearly $60 billion total, according to an NRF spreadsheet.

The survey polled 6,201 consumers from Nov. 1-7 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.3 percent, the NRF said.

“Though many people have already started to check off items from their holiday shopping lists, we fully expect to see many more come out on Thanksgiving Day and throughout the weekend to take in the festive sights and sounds — and to take advantage of unbeatable deals,” Matthew Shay, federation president and chief executive, said in a release.

At least one locally owned retailer hopes shoppers remember businesses based in southwest Ohio.

Danielle Fritz is owner of American Pi, a Dayton women’s clothing store, and owner (with her family) of Centerville Coin & Jewelry Connection. Fritz has been among the more prominent local proponents of Small Business Saturday, a day when shoppers are encouraged to remember hometown businesses.

Fritz said a little spent locally goes a long way. If people set aside half their holiday spending on local food and products for 30 days, they could create a “million jobs,” she said.

She encourages consumers to spend at their local card and gift store, their local grocer, their local hardware store — any locally owned retail outlet.

The idea behind Small Business Saturday is that 50 percent of your locally spent dollar stays in the community, she said.

“Everyone has to be a little bit aware of where you’re putting your dollar,” Fritz said.

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