Black Friday starts Thursday at many stores

      EUGENE, Ore. - Many stores are opening up their door to shoppers on Thanksgiving this year.

      Valley River Center decided in October that the majority of its stores would welcome customers Thanksgiving evening at 8 p.m. All other stores would open at midnight.

      Diane Bray, the marketing manager at Valley River Center, estimates 75 percent of retailers will be open at the earlier time.

      "It's a great opportunity for people to get their shopping done early, and we have events to keep it going all night long," Bray said.

      Starting at 10 p.m., Valley River Center will host a variety of activities to engage shoppers who would otherwise normally be asleep.

      There will be karaoke (10 p.m. - 3 a.m.) and a free photo booth (10 p.m. - 1 a.m.) outside Regal Cinemas. Local radio DJs will be giving away prizes from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m. in the Santa Set, although the big man in red will likely be resting up for his busy December.

      Kohl's and Target will also be opened at 8 p.m
      Best Buy will start handing out tickets to customers waiting in line beginning at 4 p.m. The electronics store will unlock its doors at 6 p.m.

      Some stores have elected to maintain their more traditional holiday schedule.

      Gateway Mall and Cabella's will hold off on opening until Friday morning at 5 a.m.