Originally Posted by xmastidings
I'm a little surprised myself to see Christmas decorations out so early, I mean usually around here you would typically start to see them come out in the stores like Michaels and such around starting in September. I wonder if they are breaking them out for Christmas in July or for the Christmas season itself?
Well, this was in Hobby Lobby, which kind of specializes in Christmas decorations. And they start this early every year (either in June or July).
The next store to put out Christmas stuff around here is Wal-Mart, who starts to put out their Christmas stuff after Labor Day in September.
So usually (and this is just around where I live), it goes this way:
Late June, Early July:
Hobby Lobby puts out Fall and Christmas decorations, slowly increasing so that they are at full "Holiday Spirit" by September. The "Fall" section includes Thanksgiving decorations as well.
Walgreens starts to put out Halloween decorations. Usually they are at full "Halloween festiveness" by mid September. Wal-Mart follows suit starting in mid September, usually at full strength by October 1st.
Early to Mid September (after Labor Day):
Wal-Mart starts to put out Christmas decorations in the "Lawn and Garden" section, slowly overtaking that whole section by Mid-October! Hobby Lobby just now gets around to putting up a small Halloween section, usually fully in place by October 1st.
Mid to Late October:
As Halloween gets close, stores in our local mall (J.C. Penney's, Macy's, Dillards, etc) slowly start to slip in a few Christmas decorations. The day after Halloween, these stores in the mall completely flip over to Christmas spirit, and are usually fully Christmas decorated within a week. Also, I've noticed as you're walking down the walkways in the Mall, the music coming through the speakers in the mall switches over to Christmas music right around Nov. 1st (sometimes a day or two before Halloween)!
While the mall may go completely Christmas, other stores like Wal-Mart and Wal-Greens flip over to Thanksgiving supplies and decorations the day after Halloween. Christmas supplies and decorations increase as well (no longer just the "Lawn and Garden" section in Wal-Mart). Certain radio stations play "teaser" Christmas music (the occasional Christmas song).
The major radio station in the area - a "current hits/soft rock" station - makes the switch over to playing 24/7 Christmas music a week or two before Thanksgiving (followed sometimes by the major rival station - which plays a "Greatest Hits" variety). In Wal-Mart and Wal-Greens, Christmas overtakes Thanksgiving by late November, even before Thanksgiving arrives! That's usually due to preparation for "Black Friday". It's like the stores have to at least acknowledge "Thanksgiving", but they really want to move on straight to Christmas.
And then after "Black Friday", the holiday season is fully engaged. The "local Christian music" radio station makes the switch over to 24/7 Christmas music either on Thanksgiving day or the day after Thanksgiving (as they believe to play Christmas music any earlier is disrespectful to the reason for the season).
Anyway, that's what it's like around where I live, in Southern Missouri.