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You Tell Us: Too Early To Prep For Christmas?

An interesting discussion started in Patch comments today.

Is it too early to deck the halls?

That's the question raised by some Patch commenters in our weekend guide post from Thursday morning. A Towson church is holding its Christmas festival, while the Avenue at White Marsh is having its annual tree lighting.

Commenter Gregg Roberts said:

Wow, it isn't even Thanksgiving and Christmas festivities started on November 2nd. When I was a kid there was no thought of Christmas until Santa showed up on the Thanksgiving Day parade. A Christmas tree lighting before Thanksgiving would have been thought a joke. 

Why not enjoy the simple beauty of Thanksgiving and -- let the Christmas holiday last longer. It seems by the middle of November, radio stations are playing Christmas carols but some stop midnight on Christmas Day. The 12th Day of Christmas is January 5th. Why not fill up the cold and possibly snowy weather of January with extended Christmas atmosphere then ruin Thanksgiving? Malls -- The Avenue -- don't worry you can get your shoppers from Black Friday all the way through After Christmas and New Year's sales going well into January.

Commenter Tim said the early date for an event like the Avenue tree lighting wasn't going to stop him:

It's absolutely ridiculous the Tree Lighting is a full week before Thanksgiving, but the Mrs and my little one want to go, so we will. It was the same last year.

Many department store chains—except, notably, Nordstrom—have already put out their holiday merchandise. Other holiday lighting ceremonies are fast approaching too. In New York, Rockefeller Center's Christmas tree just arrived and will be lit on Nov. 28. The tree lighting in Washington and the lighting of Baltimore's Washington Monument, however, won't happen until Dec. 6.

The Consumerist blog has examples of so-called "Christmas Creep" dating back to August and September.

So you tell us: How do you feel about tree lightings and Christmas sales in mid-November?

John Doe November 15, 2012 at 07:29 PM
The early Christmas decorations will never stop, but I wish it would. I am so thankful for what I have in life - and each year Thanksgiving means more and more to me for the true 'gifts' I have in life. This, in turn, makes me want to give more to those in need for basic things like shelter, clothes, and food.
Buzz Beeler November 15, 2012 at 08:23 PM
Christmas will die a slow death. I can see already in my neighborhood. Few and fewer are decorating. Just like the song, "Just Another Sunday."
Skip727 November 15, 2012 at 08:35 PM
I agree with Buzz. Fewer and fewer people are decorating now.
Buzz Beeler November 15, 2012 at 09:02 PM
It's the new PC America if your part of the PC. You see in it our flag, National Anthem, and other American customs.
Gregg Roberts November 16, 2012 at 11:51 AM
I'm glad that my comment sparked this dialogue although I never would have thought it would strike such a chord. I think it's wonderful, although also good business sense that places like the Avenue have tree lighting ceremonies but the timing is all off. If it was even the day after Thanksgiving it would feel enjoyable but before Thanksgiving it is akin to going to an Easter Parade the weekend before St. Patrick's Day. It does feel like too much commercialism when done this way. And a word of advice if you decorate for Christmas by Thanksgiving by the time Christmas actually rolls around you will likely be all Christmas-ed out. It wasn't too long ago when trees weren't decorated until Christmas eve. Prior to that decorations were slowly added, often on each day of Advent. Things got brighter and brighter and the Christmas spirit grew not waned as Christmas approached. I usually don't get around to taking down Christmas decorations until the long MLK Day weekend in January though I usually turn off the displays after the weekend after New Year's. I often find myself glad they are still there when a mid January snowstorm occurs and I can enjoy the Christmas lights against the backdrop of snow. I'd rather err on leaving up the decorations too long them putting them up to early for this reason as well. In any event, it is good that the Christmas spirit on some level exists even if it gets people in the spirit on the first of November....
Gregg Roberts November 16, 2012 at 11:59 AM
As far as there being less and less Christmas decorations... in some parts of the country, like Miami there are almost no decorations. In Europe, the towns themselves put up often elaborate Christmas displays but private homes don't make nearly the effort we doing in decking the halls -- at least on the outside. On one level, you won't find many places with more Christmas lights then here in Baltimore County. The new LED lights once they are lower in price, I believe will encourage more people to put up and leave up longer light displays because of lower electricity costs. As far as the comments about Christmas being under attack -- I can't judge what is in the hearts of people by their decorating gusto. Maybe they are busy with two jobs, maybe they don't have the money, maybe they prefer a simpler Christmas without the flash. I believe my original point about not starting Christmas too early and continuing it through all 12 Days of Christmas is a sure way to keep the spirit of Christmas alive versus the commercialism which probably turns many off. Thanksgiving has lacked that commercialism and that is why it is a shame it is being eroded. Thanksgiving is the holiday most under attack. Though it is not a big decorating holiday, what happened to all the paper cut outs, piligrims and indian lawn displays that used to be abundant in stores? Many celebrate it just like Christmas without too many decorations but others have no time to be thankful withgift shopping to do.
Jordan West April 02, 2014 at 06:10 PM
Christmas preparations just keep getting moved up every year. People are going to start preparing for Christmas in July now. I can't wait for it this year. http://www.orlandoac.com/

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